Year in Review — 2014

This time of the year, I always enjoy looking back at the past year to reflect what I have achieved and what has happened. Not only is it motivational to remind yourself of your successes, but when thinking ahead about the goals for 2015, it is equally good to remind yourself of what hasn’t worked and what you need to try and change.

Traveling even farther
It’s been a busy travel year. I managed to log effectively two times around the earth and a total of 58 flights to destinations such as Detroit, Montreal, Shanghai, London and São Paulo. Plus of course all the trips back and forth to Frankfurt where I have been living for the past months. All in all, TripIt tells me that I did break 100 travel days this year.

I very much would like 2015 to be as busy of a travel year, preferably with a few more long haul flights, but I also know my “commuting” between Gothenburg and Frankfurt will come to an end in January when I will be back in Gothenburg. You never know though. More travel is definitely on the agenda.

Being in business is a roller-coaster ride
Business wise, this year has ironically enough been one of my best to date. My travels have had me meet not only friends, but new exciting people with whom I believe many exciting things are in store for 2015.

During the year, I have been very fortunate to be able to work with even more wonderful clients on some truly awesome projects. To all my clients, old and new, I want to extend another most heartfelt thank you. It is an honor to be working with you.

Sadly, business is not always positive. Projects do occasionally turn sour for various reasons and that is not fun. Yes, twice this year I have been faced with threats of being sued (nope—you don’t get used to it), which we have thankfully been able to avoid. It is always sad when projects go sour because I am truly in this business to make a positive difference and it is a dagger to my heart when, usually, expectations turns out not to match. Not everything is a bed of roses and sadly, these things do happen even to the best.

This year also saw me loosing some people who I thought of as both colleagues and good friends. However, and I will repeat this time and time again: Anyone who tries to take advantage of my kindness will find that my patience eventually runs out. Life is too short not to be treated with respect.

Financial-wise, June had me conclude a very strong business year (broken: Jul-Jun) for the company and the numbers at the half-year point now shows this one to be even better, in all metrics. This of course is something that I am very proud of to achieve and I am even prouder to be looking at another record year. To me, this is testament that my philosophy that I bring to the business is attractive and valuable.

Speaking, speaking, speaking
I have been doing less speaking than I would like to. Speaking is something that I enjoy tremendously. Despite less speaking gigs than I would like to (which I hope to change in 2015), I have been fortunate enough to get to speak at some really fun events and to some great audiences this year.

For me, a personal highlight was being invited as a guest lecturer in the Entrepreneurship course at Frankfurt’s Goethe-Universität, after which I have also been asked to be an advisor at their incubator.

Looking into 2015
As I sit here with candles lit, listening to my beloved christmas carols sung by the Choir of King’s College, Cambridge, thinking ahead, I can’t help it but feel both inspired and grateful.

I have big goals for 2015 for the business and where I want it to be as I sit here at the end of the year. While I don’t want to go over them here and now (you’ll see during the year), it isn’t a secret that I want the business to grow, especially after I finish my studies with my Bachelors Degree in Economics this summer.

My main goal for 2015 is however personal. It is finding a better balance. Taking some more time off and basically making sure I reduce some of the unnecessary stress and pressure. Simply put: I need to take better care of myself and get breaks. If not, I will again (as I did just before Christmas) end up on the verge of a breakdown—and I have no desire to go over there.

While I enjoy being busy as much as the next person, relaxing and doing some things that are fun and take your mind off things allow you to be more productive and focus better when you need to. The net effect being an overall improvement.

Finally, what’s left is to wish you…
It’s been a 2014 that has gone up and down—a lot. It will likely be a 2015 that is going to go up and down too, but hopefully with less magnitude.

With this year of review concluded, all that remains for me is to wish each and every one of you a very happy and prosperous new year and a sincere thank you to everyone for your support and even more so for following my blog and reading what I have to say. I am humbled and thankful!

Best wishes for the new year,

Erik

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