Ep 89 | How I End My Year

Congratulations on making it through 2020! I can't wait to see what 2021 brings to your organization.

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Pop some champagne! We did it! 2020 was a year for the record books and whatever it brought you and your organization, you made it. That's definitely worth celebrating. But you can't stop there. It's time to really kick off 2021 with a bang and keep things going. What can you do this week to start 2021 off with a bang?


In this episode you'll learn:

→ about finalizing my budget.
→ how I finalize my annual goals.
→ reflection and its importance on growing and evolving.
→ how to get prepped for Q1 of 2021!

Want to skip ahead?  Here are some key takeaways:

[4:30] One of my least favorite tasks is finalizing my budget. I strive every year to do better and better with this each year with regards to managing my expenses and really having a good pulse on where my income is coming through so I can continue to grow and scale my business.
[5:35] One planner I love is Amber McCue's Fresh Start Workbook. It allows me to reflect on the last year and really take in what works and what doesn't. What do I want more of and what should we not do again.
[6:53] Setting your annual goals is the next step. Or revisiting and finalizing them. I like to set broad goals for the year and then chunk them into quarterly goals. I love using the Fresh Start Workbook and the Full Focus Planner for these things.


Fresh Start Workbook
Full Focus Planner

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Full Transcript

[INTRO] Hey there, Sami here with another episode of digital marketing therapy. And can we just pop some champagne? I mean, we did it. This is officially the last episode of 2020 for this podcast, and can I just say like, what a year it has been. When I reflect on the year, it has just kind of really been challenging. And we've gone through a lot in our family. And it has been beautiful in just kind of the way that my business has kind of blossomed in the ways that I have really found that centering. And you know, how happy I am to be supporting the people that I'm supporting with our work. And it has just been a whirlwind where things are just changing all the time. And I know that I'm not alone, I know that we're all feeling that.

So I just wanted to take a minute to say congratulations, you did it. Whether the year far exceeded what you expected to happen this year, or you didn't quite hit what you wanted. That's okay. Nobody could have expected, you know, we plan, right? We plan, we strategize, we come up with goals and ideas. But there's no way that any of us could have anticipated the sets of challenges that we would be facing in 2020. So you did it, you're still standing, your business is still here. Or maybe you've started a new business, maybe you're part of a new organization, whatever. But I just want to take a minute and say congratulations, I'm so proud of you. And I cannot wait for 2021 there's something about a new year a fresh start. That just feels really good.

So today, what I want to talk to you about is really just kind of how I wrap up my year. And what I'm doing this year for the holidays, and or what I did, I guess I'm recording this before Christmas. But what what I'm doing for the holidays, how I'm trying to get myself prepped and ready to go for the fresh start in on January 1, and just how I how I wrap things up. So that's we're going to talk about today.

But before we get into it this episode, I'm so excited to announce our Online Fundraising Virtual Summit. And that's what this episode is brought to you by sorry, I just like couldn't even complete a sentence. I'm just so darn excited about it. So this virtual summit takes place February 8 through the 12th. And it's online, it's free. We have 20 some speakers or 25 topics that we're going to be sharing with you and it's all about building your monthly recurring donor program. So how can you build that base of monthly donors so that you know you have a certain amount of money that you can guarantee it's hitting your bank account every month, just to ease up on your fundraising so that you can continue to be strategic, get out of the weeds and start growing your organization and serving more people. So you can get on the waitlist right now by going to https://onlinefundraisingsummit.com And registration officially opens in January like January 18. But you get on the waitlist now I'll send you all the information that you need. But I really hope that you'll join us it's going to be an amazing week, I really think it will really help with your financials and your stability and your growth and your sanity. Right. So https://onlinefundraisingsummit.com, it's February, the 12th get on the waitlist right now. And for now let's just get into this episode.

[CANNED INTRODUCTION] You're listening to the Digital Marketing Therapy Podcast. I'm your host, Sami Bedell-Mulhern. And each week, I bring you tips from myself and other experts, as well as hot seats with small business owners and entrepreneurs to demystify digital marketing and get you on your way to generating more leads and growing your business.

[BODY] Okay, so here we are at the end of 2020. I think the year that we thought maybe would never end and or maybe wouldn't stop throwing curveballs at us. But regardless of the year that we've had a few things that I like to do at the end of the year, to just make sure that I'm prepped and ready to go.

Task #1 The first one is complete my budget and I say this is the first one because this is also the most painful one for me. Budget numbers and things or it has been a growing and evolving saying in my business, and I try to do better every year. That's my goal. So I've always started with a budget but how I maintain my financial throughout the year sometimes it's better than others and I'm just being real with you here. But um, you know, I'm excited to have some accountability partners this year to really help us like move that into the next phase because I truly believe that keeping an eye on your financials is what's going to help you grow and evolve. And you all know this, I'm not teaching you anything new here. But trying to have my budget completed and ready to go before January 1 is really a big thing so that I can start tracking and keeping things in check from the very beginning. So I don't have to spend extra time and going backwards and trying to figure all of that out. So number one, by the end of the year, I want to have my 2021 budget done. And so we're working on that.

Task #2 The second thing that I like to do is really, I've always been a huge fan of using Amber McCue's, she calls it I don't know, what does she call it? Now, I should have had this all prep. But she has her Fresh Start workbook that I have gotten every year. And I love it because it allows me to really reflect on what 2020 or what 2020 was, what did I like, What didn't I like, What do I want? What and then what does 2021 look like for me? How do I want to show up? How does my personal and business life interact with each other? How do I want this to grow? And I understand that being a solopreneur versus a established organization like that can be very different. But I think that there's plant, you know, having that time and space for your organization to come together and say, Okay, what really worked? Well, what didn't work well. And then I feel like for 2020, like what surprised you? Like what were you able to do? You know, that maybe you didn't think you could do? What did COVID and the quarantine and all of that force you to do differently that maybe worked better than you expected? So really taking that time to reflect on the last year? how things went, how things didn't go, what will you continue to do? What will you never do? Again, right? writing those things down is always super important.

Task #3 And then the third thing that I like to do is just set my goals, if you haven't done them already, like what are my goals for my business for 2021. And I like to set kind of broad goals for the year. So I might have a broad revenue goal, right, which is why I like to do my budget. First, I might have my broad revenue goal I might have so for this year, you heard me tease that we are hosting the first online fundraising virtual summit.

And we are hoping to hold several of those throughout the year, we've got a couple of topics that we want to be talking about. So that's a goal of mine, the regular content creation, which is this podcast, that's a goal of mine, because I love doing it. And I hope you guys love listening to it. And and some other goals are just you know, I've got some personal and family goals that I am incorporating. And I have some individual goals that I'm incorporating for my health for my mental and physical health and things like that. And I think it's important to do that all at once. Whether you're part of a large organization or working by yourself, because it really just dictates your time.

So I know that I have things that I want to put in place next year, and I'm not calling them resolutions. I did an episode about resolutions last year. It's more just like putting myself first putting myself in, in priority just as I do my clients, my work my husband, my family, right. So I've got all of my goals then lined out so I can really make sure that things are in place and that I am not overextending myself, because that's something that I have tended to do.

A big theme for me this year is really simplifying. So, you know, we've simplified the products and services that we offer, we've really created one specific strategy for how we're going to move forward, not doing too many things all at once, because that tends to just distract you. So what's the main vision and goal for your organization? What is like, if you're a year from now sitting down at your desk reflecting? Like I just mentioned that we like to do, you know, what's the one thing that you really want to say? Like? Yeah, we did that and feel really good about it. Because opening up your intentions, opening up your space to have those things happen, I have found to be really valuable and trying to do too many things at too many times can be really tricky.

Now I understand working with a board and depending on the size of your organization, this is easier said than done. But if you can really bring everybody together and and have a cohesive goal and vision for 2021. I think that's really going to help and we have a word. And my word for 2021 is simplify. It really is just simplify. Don't do too many things. Focus on the big rocks that we know are going to move our organization forward and don't get shiny object syndrome right like don't get distracted by the one donor that says, Well, I want to give you all this money. But in order for me to give it to you, you have to do this thing. And maybe this thing doesn't align with that big rock. And while it's painful to say, you know what, that money isn't really going to help us for what we're trying to do right now, you'd be surprised about what that opens up for the rest of, you know what, what other opportunities might come in place of that, that you wouldn't be able to take advantage of? Because then you've recommitted and changed all of your time. Right? So yeah, so I love Amber McCue's Freshstart workbook, she does have a digital version, I'll link that up in the show notes for you, if you want to check it out. Um, and then. So let's see, I don't remember what number we're on,

Task #4 I think we're on number four. But the next thing that I want to do is then sit down, you guys know, I'm a big fan of the Full Focus Planner. So I'm getting it's we're getting to the end of the quarter. So now before January 1, what I really want to do is go back in and take my annual goals and really chunk them up into an Amber does this in her Frest Start workbook as well. took up that what did that 90 day goal look like? So what do I need to do in the next 90 days in order to keep pushing things forward in 2021, and stay on track. So I like to have that all solidified so that when I get ready back to the office, I think what it'll probably be January 4, because I think the first is on a Friday.

So when I hit the ground running on the fourth, I know I've got my plan ready, I could just take a look at my book, I can really start focusing on what needs to be done to move the needle forward and have things in place. I'm also really going through and cleaning up my project management software, we use ClickUp, which I absolutely love, and, and kind of trying to start to put more things in there that's on my list this year to really clean that up and make more use out of it in and get things upgraded in there. Because we are hoping to hire more people in 2021. And so we need to have our systems in place if we're going to be able to do that. Yeah, so that's basically where I like to leave things so that I can kind of breathe a little bit at the end of the year. And then really feel refreshed, energized and ready to go, I don't want to start the year. Feeling heavy, bogged down. Like I've got this huge list of to dues, right. So I want to clean all that up, keep everything fresh, and keep everything moving forward. So as far as time off this year goes, you know, it's a little bit tricky.

So, you know, we're still doing online learning, we're catching our kids up over break. I am loving this time of year, because my clients are usually on break a little bit more. And so I can focus more on my business stuff. So the budget things and things like that, that I talked about. And then also kind of the planning pieces and elements of the online summit that we're putting together, I can pull all of like focus more on that stuff more so than client work, because most of my clients are also on break. So that feels really good.

We are because Christmas is on a Friday this year, we took Thursday, Friday off, so we'll have that for a week. And then we plan on I plan on working hard, you know, again, the last week of December just to kind of get things finished and finalized. And then taking probably a half day on Thursday, the 31st. And then Friday, the first off. So that's what I'm doing. I know a lot of people are taking the last two weeks of the year off, which I envy a lot and I hope to be able to do in the future. So my goal for 2021 is also to have those planned break times. And so you know, having, we're planning on going to Iowa for a few weeks in the summer to see family and then you know, hopefully taking the last couple of weeks off in the year. So I've put all of those into my plans. There, those scheduled breaks are in there, and we'll see what happens because you know, it life is life. But it's just a good reminder to to you whether you work for yourself or you work for a company. Having those plan breaks in your calendar.

Like really, we talked about this when we were talking about content planning, right? Like what are the big milestones that you have going on? What are the big rocks? Like? What are the big events that you have going on? What are the family obligations that you want to put on the calendar, and really intentionally putting those things down will make it more likely that you will take that time for yourself and we need to take that time for ourselves. So this is what I'm up to for the rest of the year. This is what I'm trying to get accomplished.

I am so grateful to all of you for participating and listening to this podcast. I really hope that you will subscribe where you listen I really hope that you will take some time for yourself at the end of the year. I really hope that you are planning and putting things in place And I am excited to go into another year of the digital marketing therapy podcast. We already have some great things lined up for you guys, and I will see you in the new year. Bye for now


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