October! Already? You bet! My favourite time of year. Fall is the best season for so many reasons. The fall colours begin. The landscape gets a new look, much like when someone gets their hair coloured for a refreshing change. The air is crisp and full of promise of the winter snow soon to come that will blanket us. This is much like our budget planning in the fourth quarter for the next year that will cover us for the next twelve months.
As much as it is exciting to look forward and plan, it’s also nice at this time of the year to sit back and reflect on everything that has transpired in the past months. Did we meet/exceed our goals that we budgeted for during this time last year? Did we have any unexpected surprises or challenges? How did we handle them? Are we happy with how things played out? What was your Big Win? I think it’s as important to look back and truly evaluate what went on last year as it is to look forward and plan for next. It gives us the opportunity to continue doing something we are having success with, our Big Win, while also allowing us to see what we didn’t have success with and assist us in avoiding similar situations.
Personally, I realized that I cannot attend everything. I can’t be in two places at once. I can’t be in two cities in the opposite direction of one another on the same day. That one was the hardest, as I am directionally challenged and was certain I could attend a seminar in Scarborough at 10:00 AM until 12:00 PM and scoot over to Sarnia for 1:00 PM for another. Well, both places started with “S” didn’t they? Seriously though, I had to choose which seminar was of more value to me and it was tough.
That happened at the beginning of last year and I made a concerted effort to choose seminars that were of value, geographically attainable and ones that would benefit not only me but my clients as well. I think the best seminars are the ones that you can’t wait to tell others about and share information with. I was fortunate to attend some of these types of seminars this year and really found a difference in attending them than I did in prior years. I believe it is because I really put the extra thought into them by picking and choosing and not just ‘going’ for the sake of going. It’s like anything in life, you enjoy what you choose to do much more than what you think you should do. It’s just really great when your choices are beneficial to you in your profession. That’s a big win!
So as I begin to ponder and budget for next year, I scan the trade publications for seminars and conventions for 2014 and plan accordingly – Having said that, I also plan for growth and retention and servicing of my clients. When I can do all of those things and manage a work life balance, that’s going to be my Big Win. What’s your Big Win?
About the Author
Lisa Arseneau is transportation insurance broker with over 25 years of experience in the trucking industry. She is the Vice President of T.R.I.P Division of the Pearson Dunn Insurance. She is a member of the Ontario Trucking Association, The Toronto and Hamilton Transportation Clubs and is and is passionate advocate for her clients.