Business reflections on 2020

Not meeting expectations doesn’t have to be a bad thing

When we get to this time of the year, I always take the time to reflect and celebrate everything I achieved. Especially in a year like this. Lockdown 3.0 and all. Was it what I expected? Not at all. Was that a bad thing? Not at all.

Even in this Covid year, time has flown by. Crazy as it seems when the world seemed to slow down. Less travel, less face-to-face meetings. Thankfully, as an international entrepreneur, Zoom was already a big part of my life. And thankfully I live next to a National Parc, so when I wanted to ‘escape’, I could. Maybe it felled time flew by because whatever I did, it seemed to be done more intentionally. Business wise, during off-time as well as in contact with family and friends.

Unexpected opportunities

Covid brought a lot of challenges but turned out to be a blessing in disguise for my special needs kids. My autistic wonderboy didn’t have to go through a week full of social activities at the beginning of college – ‘seriously mom this is the best time for socially awkward people – and enjoys online classes. And for the first time ever my supergirl battling juvenile arthritis could follow her classes online and even do her tests online. Bonus: starting each day with a long walk with the dog – including husband who suddenly worked from home. It takes some time to adjust after 20 years, but it is so worth it!

Writing for the international high-tech and life sciences industry was for a big part business as usual. On the logistic side it provided on one hand the opportunity to really deep dive into core messaging, new website texts and all with clients – while on the other hand more light-hearted blogs for the industry were postponed until further notice. Too bad of course, but totally understandable. It also gave me time for an incredible new client whose core business is to make the world a better place by helping industries to reduce packaging and work towards a circular economy. When I found a 32-year old photo of me dressed up as a little environmentalist it was like it all came to a full circle.

Not as expected – but that’s not a bad thing

Clients deep diving into their core messaging meant expanding my team and services with a German and French translator and English writers and editor. I could have never predicted this January last year.

Was 2020 in line with what I had expected and or what I had planned? Nope. Not even in the slightest way. But did my business grow? Yes. When opportunities crumbled on one part of my business, I tweaked my message and services. It actually brought me closer to who I am: a technical and cultural copywriter – helping clients to make technical ‘geek speak’ understandable and incorporating the culture of their clients, so they can successfully bring their message across and thus successfully sell.

Rewording or rewriting?

So, reflect. What went well, what didn’t and what could and can be tweaked? Is it a matter of rewording or finetuning your message or do you need a fresh sheet of paper?

Don’t get me wrong – as an expat and extravert I can’t wait to travel and be around people again. But till then I count my blessings, tweak my business and will continue to write. And enjoy being next to a National Parc to escape once in a while.

Stay safe, stay healthy and stay happy and have a Merry Christmas and Wonderful beginning of 2021 with your loved ones – via Zoom or in person.

Nadine.

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