I’ve wrapped up another year, my 19th in business and one that took me by surprise.
It started without the traditional January time off due to February deadlines for jobs I’d been asked to do before Christmas 2014. That boded well for the year ahead, despite the lack of holiday.
However, before the first quarter was done and dusted I had to make a really tough decision to part with a client I’d been with for about seven years. After six months of upheaval and uncertainty that left me in the dark (not great for a communicator), I made the tough decision to end my contract.
I thought it might be time to put some energy into the Social Media Matters workshops I’d started developing the previous year.
Nineteen workshops and more than 100 participants later – from small, intimate sessions to packed board rooms in Dubbo to Walgett and Narrabri to Griffith and Narrandera, Warren to Warialda and Quirindi – Social Media Matters was my personal hit of 2015.
You don’t know what you don’t know – Pulse blog
Before I’d quite finished my training schedule for the year, I was approached to put together a communications plan for a potential new project in Dubbo, using public art to increase property values and foot traffic through the CBD, along with a range of other objectives. It was early August.
By the end of August I was project manager of BOOMDubbo and the first commissioned street artist arrived in town weeks later. Between August and the end of November we completed 17 portraits of historical and contemporary identities with a connection to Dubbo or the region across four sites in the CBD. As well as managing the day-to-day requirements of the project, I built a website, documented the project from start to finish, put together the first art walk for the project and managed to garner significant amounts of local, regional and international media coverage in the process, finishing the year with a big planning session for 2016.
Follow BOOMDubbo on Facebook, Instagram or Twitter @boomdubbo
In between travelling and delivering training and running BOOMDubbo, I continued to write weekly news and feature editorials (and take the photos) for Dubbo Weekender.
I also have several social media marketing clients for whom I either manage content and scheduling, or coach. They certainly keep my general knowledge interesting given the diversity of these businesses – everything from naturopathy to rural merchandising.
Added to the list of achievements for the year was coordinating and participating in the second annual #bringtolightproject – a contemporary art initiative I started last year. I’ve also got a major multi art form project in full swing, The Chapel Project, scheduled for performances in October 2016 as part of Artlands Dubbo – the national regional arts conference and festival.
I also moved into my new art studio – a container conversion by the in-house handyman. It’s a wonderful space in which to dream up new projects for the years ahead.
…I nearly forgot! 2015 saw me get my first and 10th tweets on the ABC’s Q&A – my Monday night armchair sport.
So, now I’m intending to have my summer holiday. The office is closed until 28 January. Time to read a pile of books, regroup and re-energise for what I’m thinking will be a massive 20th year…there’s even a trip to France in the plan.