Keeping up with the craziness that started at the beginning of this year has me gasping for air. In January, I published my big audacious goals or Objectives and Key Results (OKRs) for 2021. Today, I set aside time to reflect mid-year.
This is when I take a step back and look at my progress and whether I’ve met any of my OKRs. It’s also an excellent time to learn from my set backs to note any changes or pivot. Life happens, and a decision to pivot or eliminate a goal will happen. One of my most significant learning moments for me is to maintain a healthier lifestyle. The adverse effects have significant ramifications. Hear an episode on Clear To Send about tackling mental health and burnout.
Let’s break it down.
Increase Sales by 70%
Sales is hard. I’ve read books on how to be better at sales. It’s all mindset. But you need to understand how people buy. Then I have to take action and pick up the phone!
Earlier this year, the goal was to target $900k in revenue. So far, we’re 41% of the way. This year, there was an emphasis on hardware sales. We’re 42% towards our goal of $450k. Being a VAR has its own set of challenges where I have to question the whole process. But that’s another story. The professional service’s target is $350k, and we’re 31% there.
The lesson here is I’m just one person doing sales and professional services. Efficiency is critical, and processes need to be in place. Sales cycles are long, and it gives me time to think of how I can improve.
Compared to 2020 this year-to-date, Packet6 is up 42% in professional services, and hardware is up 674%. The changes and goals we’ve set appear to be working!
Produce Consistent Content
Creating content has proved to be challenging for me. With only 14 blogs published this year, I’ll need to adjust my workflow for higher efficiency. But 14 is not bad!
I’ve accepted the fact I can’t produce videos in the style I desire. Through this process, it’s more critical for me to get something published. It doesn’t have to be perfect.
Initiate a Marketing Plan
I have not started on any marketing plan. But I have been reading books in preparation. Some of the valuable books are Building A Story Brand and Marketing Made Simple.
The process is still in the early stages, but the priority should be increased. I’ve made progress by changing the website to speak more to client challenges and the goals I’m trying to achieve.
Build Proficiency with Python
Have not had the capacity to focus on Python scripting. My son and I have plans to learn Python together and I think that will make a fun project for the both of us.
Build a Technical Presence
There’s a method to my madness for building a technical presence. This hasn’t been a priority due to the projects I have taken on. Part of the plan involves creating authority and developing courses.
It would honestly be amazing to create my own income by helping others in IT.
Publish Content Consistently
This year-to-date, there have been 8 blogs published, with 5 from Q3 alone. The lesson learned here is to create a content calendar.
One of the few things I enjoy is creating content based on my own technical and business experiences. I haven’t published a full video since January 2nd, 2021. There’s a lot of planning and producing involved. I may need to adjust my expectations in video production quality and simply aim for content quality. But the downside of publishing videos and blogs is getting eyes on the content.
Earlier in the year, I was able to finally obtain my CompTIA CTT+. The goal of acquiring the CTT+ certification is to develop courses under my own name and for Clear To Send.
With my capacity being at an all-time high, I haven’t spent time developing any courses. A certification I am now adding to the list is the PCNSA. I’ve now decided to drop CCNP and CCNP Wireless for now. Interests change, and the Cisco certifications aren’t interesting to me anymore.
Clear to Send
Publishing and maintaining a podcast means building an audience. Our goal is to get to the ears of many IT professionals who want to learn more about Wi-Fi.
In doing so, we’ve achieved 69% of our goal to 1,500 email subscribers. This is how we reach out to our listeners on our own platform. We have email signup options on our podcast website, and we’ve made PDF downloads which require people to join our email list.
Every month we range between 7k and 15k downloads. On average, we’re at 6k downloads per month. That’s only 24% to our goal of 25k. We still have a long ways to go to increase the exposure to the podcast.
In building our CTS community, we’ve made 94% of our goal of having 550 members in the Slack workspace. We funnel people into the Slack workspace through Twitter, LinkedIn, and our email list.
Increase Social Media Following
In conjunction with building exposure for the podcast, we’re growing an audience through social media using Twitter and LinkedIn.
Our primary method of communication is through Twitter, where we’re 69% to our goal of 5,000 followers.
On LinkedIn, we are 43% to our goal of 3,000 followers.
We track our follower count to gauge our reach and to drive more listeners to the podcast. We attribute much of the podcast’s success to social media. Without listeners, we may not have Clear To Send.
Create Three Courses
Following the creation of A Practical Guide to Wi-Fi Site Surveys, we wanted to focus on creating courses for CWNA, CWDP, and CWAP.
Our lives got really busy, which took away time to developing the curriculum. CWNA is still up next for us, and we have a portion of the curriculum completed.
We did not want to rush into these courses. We always aim to put out quality work.
It looks like I have a lot going on. And I do. There are many of my OKRs I simply cannot complete. My tactic is to jot down everything I want to achieve. Keeping track of progress is done through Todoist but I am now using Notion for extensive planning.
The most important takeaway for me is to focus on one thing at a time and put out my best work. It’s planning, execution, and perseverance.
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