One of the activities we take most seriously at Q4i is establishing a theme for the year. Some of you may not appreciate the power of a theme; it may seem like a gratuitous exercise. You may feel it comes across as some sort of self-promotional opportunity.

If that’s you, we (respectfully) disagree.

We take our theme very seriously. Our themes aren’t some promo tagline we toss out. They have meaning for us and, upon hearing them, they immediately bring us back to the commitments we have made for the year. And, yes, beyond their internal effectiveness, they keep us focused on what we communicate and share with our clients and the industry as a whole.

Our themes have pushed ourselves and you in the past few years to up your game. We had fun and success as we challenged the industry, Q4i at the front of that line, to get your shift together. We spent a year creating and embracing a new normal. And, we just wrapped up the year of MORE.

And our themes are intentional. They are all born out of observations of what is needed to contribute and compete successfully in the industry, survive and thrive as a business, and be more valuable global citizens.

What we’ve observed

To say that the last couple of years has been unusual would be an understatement of epic proportion. Can you think of any aspect of your life that hasn’t been affected?

Without a lot of thought, we altered our behaviors because we didn’t have time to think. Not because we wanted to per se, but because they were necessary to survive.

We have:

  • Gone virtual
  • Limited travel
  • Avoided gatherings
  • Masked up
  • Kept a social distance
  • (The list goes on…)

We were forced into these behaviors from a place of pure, reactive survival. They weren’t a part of some master plan, they just “were.”

Our 2022 theme is not about COVID, but, as with everything else on the planet, it is definitely influenced by the pandemic. 

Nobody knows what the next phase of the pandemic will bring. Masking, distancing, limited travel, and virtual interaction will likely be a part of our lives for a long time to come.

But, those are no longer new and unfamiliar behaviors for us. For the most part, we're no longer in the reactive, panic mode that comes from being thrown into an unfamiliar situation. As much as we may not like the circumstances, we have, mostly, acclimated to them.

Internal reflections

We have been very blessed as a business over the past couple of years. Q4i has grown. We’ve added great new clients and added significantly to our team members.

We achieved this growth, not in spite of the pandemic, but because of it. Because we were born a virtual organization some 13 years ago, we were uniquely positioned to help others make that transition when it was forced on them.

But, of course, we have not been immune to the other challenges COVID has brought. We have learned that while some of the ways we have worked are spot-on to drive success in 2022, others needed to be overhauled, or at least tweaked.

Admittedly, our success hasn’t come without challenges. We brought new team members into roles that didn’t exist for us before. New team members have forced us to think about roles, responsibilities, and how we work together.

Because of the changing world, our marketing and coaching clients are looking for guidance in ways they never have before. They need us to educate, interact, evaluate, and serve them based on where we all are today and where we’re headed tomorrow. We have reinforced the belief that we are uniquely qualified to meet these changing needs in some ways and see we are woefully unprepared in others.

We have recently made both subtle and wholesale changes in how we operate. Some changes have been as subtle as how we schedule certain calls with clients. Others have been as profound as overhauling our marketing division, at least in terms of our sales process and how we structure our engagements.

Like most businesses, we have had turnover on our team. This has forced, allowed really, us to step back and evaluate the roles we need on our team to scale and grow, but mostly to serve the changing needs of our clients.

In a word (okay two), we have found ourselves in a level of reflection and adjustments that we never have before. Yes, much of this has been internal, but it has also been about the very way we work with our clients. It has caused us to realize that we need to guide and challenge our clients to be doing the same in their businesses.

It has led us to our theme for the year - Rethink Everything.

Rethinking everything? What does that mean?

Rethinking everything doesn’t mean changing everything. It means questioning every aspect of your business. This level of wholesale questioning will often lead to a new level of confidence in your areas of strength. It will also force you to be honest about where change needs to take place.

Whatever you find yourself doing, #RethinkIt.

We know how powerful this idea of rethinking everything can be. We experience it ourselves. We also hear it from potential new clients.

As we evaluate prospects to determine if we are a fit for one another, we, of course, take them through our sales process. Our sales process is built on systematically analyzing the core areas that lead to organizational success, whether it’s overall organizational growth or specific to their marketing success.

Despite the fact we are technically “selling” them on a potential engagement with us, we regularly hear, “Wow, thank you for that. I’ve never thought about our business that way before.”

This is just one example of rethinking everything. When you rethink the way you look at your sales process, you understand it has the potential, and need, to be a process that helps buyers make better buying decisions and find their own new level of confidence.

You may be wondering, “Rethink EVERYTHING, huh? Did you guys at Q4i rethink the very idea of having an annual theme?” Yes, we did. In fact, we spent more time reflecting on our theme than ever before. It’s part of the reason you may have noticed us test driving the theme on recent LinkedIn posts, #RethinkEverything.

Part of our conclusion is obvious based on the fact you’re reading this blog. However, what isn’t as obvious is our commitment to the idea and the specific theme.

We believe in both more than we have with any theme we’ve had before. Rethinking allows us to start the year with an unprecedented level of confidence.

We hope this idea already has you thinking and #RethinkingEVERYTHING.

 

Photo by bangoland