At Q4intelligence, we select an annual theme. We've used these themes to keep us focused and motivated since our inception 15 years ago. This post is both an unveiling of this year’s theme and an accountability report from last year’s.
We have always felt that every theme was exactly right for that particular year. Of course, some themes outlive others. Some themes become evergreen and ingrained into our organizational DNA. One of our earliest themes, "Fill Gaps and Take Away Excuses," has become a mantra that describes our commitment to delivering what our clients need.
Other themes, like "Get Shit Done," attach themselves to our identity and brand. Yet others, "Simplify" and "Intentional vs. Accidental,” for example, stay at the forefront of our consciousness and drive our daily mindset.
We plan with purpose and reflection
We don’t choose our theme and then plan around it; quite the opposite. The theme always seems to present itself. Our planning process filters through distractions, irrelevant factors, inevitable head trash of excuses, and the crap that is beyond our control.
Our planning process starts with reflecting on what we have been doing and where we are today and focuses on the most critical objectives moving forward. Standing beautifully in the middle is the theme that pulls it all together. It's poetic how the process always results in the perfect theme at the right time.
Often, one year’s theme leads to the next
As we were planning for 2023, it was clear that we had positioned ourselves for a new era. We had worked tirelessly to create new, impactful content. We had laid the foundation to roll out new programs and to reach segments of the industry market we hadn’t been able to reach before. We had developed new internal skills and abilities that we had only dreamed of before.
All of this together led to our 2023 theme, Growth. Yes, the theme did include a focus on revenue, but that would only be a by-product of our primary focus. Last year, we committed to growing our foundation, reach, influence, abilities, engagements, and impact.
As I said in our reflection of what growth meant for me personally in 2023, it came in the form of a new understanding of the patience and preparation we must embrace in the short term to reach our long-term potential. Like many business owners, I'm a quick start and often struggle with the details.
This past year showed me unequivocally that if you are going to make significant changes and reach growth potential, the details matter. In fact, the details matter more than the big ideas.
Part of this growth was driven by the recognition of just how much growth is a team sport. Unless you are a solopreneur, your growth rate will be significantly throttled or fueled by the growth pace of those around you.
While we, Q4i, started some of our most significant projects a couple of years ago, 2023 was the year we reached the finish line with them. We never would have gotten there without an unbelievably strong and motivated internal team that kept one another in check and on task, each of us growing professionally along the way.
Drum roll, please
I realize this is a lengthy setup, but this is what led us to this year’s theme. As we planned for 2024, we reflected on our growth in 2023. That reflection included taking inventory of what we built and the position of strength we have attained. And, inevitably, the quick-start personalities kicked in. It was tempting to want to brainstorm all the things we would build next and how we would improve on what we had already built.
And, to be fair, we did brainstorm for our continued growth. But we were also hit with the realization that we can’t let that delay the impact of what we’ve already done. We had to remind ourselves of the great quote from Vince Lombardi.
“The pursuit of perfection may be impossible, but if we chase perfection, we just might catch excellence.”
We have some pretty freakin’ high standards at Q4i. We are pursuers of perfection, and, as humbly as I can say, we create a lot of excellent shit along the way. We reached the finish line with a lot of “excellence” in 2023, and we know 2024 has to be the year we share it with you.
Don’t get me wrong, there is plenty of growth that will continue to happen. But the clear takeaway from our reflection and planning was the recognition that preparation without execution is useless; it leads to untapped potential. That’s unacceptable to us; it’s time for action.
How have we summarized all that into a theme that will keep us focused on promoting and sharing what we’ve already built? Again, it presented itself beautifully to us.
2024 is the year we will keep reminding one another - Let’s freakin’ go!!!
This theme will result in a slightly different tone and message than you've heard from us in the past. You'll still recognize our tone and style; what will be a bit different is that we will unapologetically make sure industry professionals know what we have to offer and how they could benefit.
Unconsciously, we have taken too much of a "build it and they will come" approach up to this point. That worked unbelievably well for who we were and what we had to offer in the past. But 2023 brought Q4i into a new era. We have released a book and built an online growth and learning platform, the likes of which the industry hasn’t seen before.
We have built it, and now it’s time to make the industry aware of it and how it will help drive new levels of growth and learning. While our theme is always chosen based on what will keep us focused internally, we hope you will be inspired by it yourself. We encourage you to R&D (rob and duplicate) our theme and buy into a shared mindset.
Are you with us? Are you ready? Good.
Let’s freakin’ GO!!!
Content provided by Q4intelligence
Photo by patrickx007