As I sit here at my desk overlooking Arundel Square (aka Gryffindog’s Park), groups of children, looking ready for anything in their perfectly pressed uniforms, head back to school after the summer holidays. Still unburdened by the weight of heavy backpacks, there’s an obvious lightness to their step, a visible sense of excitement.
Though I have no wardrobe upgrade as of yet, nor even a fresh hairdo, I fully share their enthusiasm. For me, September is the real New Year. A legacy of a lifetime in academia, as a student, career educator, and parent? Perhaps. But I'm not alone.
For many of us, September isn't just about getting back to school, work, life. It's more than that: September is the time, after a long, restful break, to get back to the business of serving others.
September represents possibility, like an empty notebook just waiting to be filled. It signifies the hope of exploration, learning and discovery, and the challenge of undertaking new pursuits. It brings with it the opportunity to kick-off the cycle of creation again.
This is the perfect season, I believe, for dreaming and scheming and setting down the plans
I aim to commit myself to through the coming fall, winter, and spring,
and that I intend to realize before summer rolls around once more.
After our long summer sabbatical, during which we scattered to the four corners of the earth, my team and I have reassembled with a renewed sense of purpose and all the excitement that comes with it. We are bursting with energy. We are ready to scale the proverbial mountaintops again. We have a lot of exciting plans and great offerings in store. But before we head down the road of implementation, we thought it best to first pause, and then to check in with you...
...for we are dedicated to re-visioning the year ahead to be of greatest possible service to you.
I spent a lot of personal time these past six weeks reflecting on why I began traveling down this path. Admittedly, it’s not the safest route to take. Nor is it altogether sane, a fact the little devil on my shoulder feels compelled to remind me every day.
“What if you fail? What if you fail? What if you fail?" he shouts, especially loudly in my moments of doubt and weakness.
The answer is: I did it to create something of use and benefit to others.
As I thought through my own motivations, I became overwhelmed with gratitude for all of you who've elected to join me on this journey. Now, as the Team and I resume our September dreaming and scheming and plan making, it would benefit us greatly to know – so there can be no doubt – what are your goals and challenges? How might we best respond to your needs, wants, and desires?
We're kicking off our "New Year," therefore, with a special sort of ask: We'd like you to complete a simple four-question survey. In the last year, we made great strides as a burgeoning company and we are very proud of our efforts. But are you?
Are we speaking to your issues?
Are we providing you value?
We really want to know.
Your participation in this survey will mean the world to us. It will help us to know if we're on the right track. Your responses will help us as we map out our efforts going forward. They will ensure that we are prioritizing the issues of greatest importance to YOU.
In the coming week, members of my mailing list will receive not one, but two separate messages from me:
Our four-question survey will hit in-boxes on Tuesday.
My usual weekly newsletter will follow on Thursday.
(PS: it's going to be a good one, with lessons to be learned from a three-legged dog.)
For those of you not yet on the mailing list, I'll post the survey instrument here as soon as it's ready.
The survey is simple -- just four open-ended questions. It'll take you as little or as much time as you need to complete. To thank you for your valuable feedback, I promise to honor you with a future post targeted to your response.
Until then, check out the current state of our dreaming and scheming in the graphics below. Please be sure to contact us without hesitation if you wish to join us in any of these pursuits. We're always looking to build our collaborative community dedicated to topics pertaining to
putting the story back in history,
turning history on,
living creatively in the digital age, and
celebrating the beauty of late blooms.