Tag Archives: LinkedIn

Taking over the world in 2014

Arrows pointing to the year 2014I’ve already got my New Year’s Resolutions in the bag. In fact I’ve already started on them. Why wait? I’ve never been a real NYR person; I’ve always thought, if it’s worth doing, it’s worth starting now.

One of them is: I’m taking on consulting clients in 2014. Working at BCcampus is exciting and fulfilling, and I love the work so much I want to branch out and help other organizations with their strategic communications and digital strategies. I’m very lucky my boss, Dr. David Porter, supports me in my goals, and I am blessed with a fairly generous bank of time to pursue my own projects.

So tonight, as I sit to gather ideas for a business and marketing plan for the New Year (which I can help you with too by the way – just sayin’), I’m looking through my Evernote files. I came across this bit of wisdom that I had clipped and saved: You don’t have to make yourself miserable to build a great company. According to the author, Andrew Wilkinson,

Short workdays forced me to focus on the important stuff instead of dicking around in my inbox, and I quickly learned to delegate the day-to-day. I started working smart instead of working hard.

I’ve started delegating some day-to-day household tasks, like cooking (I subscribe to a frozen home-cooked meal delivery service), and shopping (I order most of my groceries online and have them delivered). Laundry is something I can take care of on my “down” day – Friday – when I work from home and do writing (during my writing process, I like to be able to get up, move, and get my hands busy while I’m thinking).

I’ve taken a lot of advice about productivity from my friend Mike Vardy over the years and I’m ready to step up my game by pursuing more work that I’m passionate about. I’m used to working in a fast-paced, deadline-driven environment and I’m up for the challenge of a few extra projects. I’m ready to take over the world in 2014!

“2014” graphic by One Way Stock, used under a Creative Commons license.


Tipped bus

Things I love about content management planning

Tipped bus

Photo Credit: Lap Fung Chan on Flickr

Short version: Plans are necessary. Plans don’t work out. It sucks sometimes. Embrace the suck.

This morning I’m editing copy for the BCcampus corporate web site (that’s where I work, in case you didn’t know). Before I started I referred back to the communications plan and the associated content management plan I wrote last fall. I had to laugh after I almost got sucked in to revising those plans to match current reality.

Things have changed. Our tactics have changed. Our minds have changed. We’ve learned some things about our users. What we set out to do isn’t quite working so we’re doing something different.

What hasn’t changed is our vision for all of our published materials: “Our stakeholders will see our publications and think: ‘This is from BCcampus, therefore I will find something new, exciting and relevant to my work in higher education.'”

That put me in mind of something I saw on Seth Godin’s blog a while back:

There’s nothing wrong with having a plan

Plans are great.

But missions are better. Missions survive when plans fail, and plans almost always fail.

So no, I’m not rewriting the content management plan. Truth be told, it’s working out quite wonderfully for the most part:

  • We have a calendar of topics for posts.
  • We have writers assigned to research and create them.
  • Each person we talk to in the post-secondary system suggest ideas for new posts.
  • Lots of people are reading and finding the information useful.
  • We have tons of work to do to make the site better. That is a good sign that we’re listening and we’re committed to doing something worthwhile.

Just because things are not exactly as we foresaw them four months ago doesn’t mean we’ve failed. It just means we are rolling with the flow, and keeping our focus on the mission. That’s what I love about our content management plan: it’s vitally important that we have it, so that when we have to break it we know why. Being a creative worker in a knowledge economy means cultivating a high tolerance for ambiguity. I wouldn’t want it any other way.

If you’re interested, I’ll be talking more in-depth about my experience with content management on a tight budget at Social Media Camp in Victoria in May.

Addendum: I need to credit and send a big hug to my former boss, now provider of services, Rena Kendall-Craden at KendallWood for teaching me the fun to be had in “embracing the suck.”



Injury status: back on the bench

I have plantar fasciitis and have been off training ever since May this year. I missed running the Vancouver marathon, moved back to Victoria, finally got my act together and budgeted for the recovery help I need to get over this most persistent and vexing injury for runners, nurses or anyone who spends a lot of time on their feet.Blue bench

I have been at the registered massage therapist’s each week for a couple of months now. Luckily Rob the Sadist – er – my RMT – specializes in injuries like mine, but I realize why I was so hesitant to get into serious treatment: the sessions are painful and exhausting – and Rob just smiles and talks all through it. (I can’t believe I pay him to hurt me like that, and why does he seem to be enjoying it? A*hole.). I’m scheduled to get fitted for new orthotics today. I’m stretching my calf muscles and my foot flexors every day – on some days I have to stretch them before I get out of bed so I can walk without a limp, which kind of sucks because I usually have a big huge mug of tea before bedtime. (0_0)

I’ve started biking and swimming to keep up my fitness, planting dreams of triathlons in my head. I recently started back (tentatively) running again on treadmill and trail.

However, it seems like it’s two feet forward, one painful step back with this injury. After last weekend’s 5k trail run I benched myself from running and biking for a couple of weeks and I’m doubling down on the swimming and stretching. Maybe I’ll add some yoga and strength training too – lord knows I need it.

I’m trying not to get discouraged, because I did have this same injury (on the other foot) about ten years ago and was off completely for 6-7 months, and returned stronger than ever. I channeled my energies into becoming a volunteer spin instructor. Now though, I’m ten years older and I’m not as far along as I hoped I’d be after 6 months of no training.

I was planning on the UBC triathlon in March 2013 – the Olympic distance. However recovery has been so stop-and-go that I’m aiming for the sprint distance instead, and I’m waiting until the last moment to register. Just in case.

As with all things – it’s important to let the healing process happen and not try to rush it.

Of course by March I’ll be out of money for weekend trips to the mainland anyway. I’ll have contributed my spare cash to Rob’s cute little daughter’s college fund.

But if it gets me back on my running legs pain-free again, it will be worth it.