With leap year, we got an extra day out of February so we were 1/29 or 3.5% more effective last month right? If we think of this year in terms of months, we are 2/12 or 16.66% of the way through the year. How are we doing?
February is a challenging month. In January, it’s easier to stay focused because goals we made just a few weeks ago. By February, these goals can seem like a distance memory unless you stay on top of them and ALWAYS place your BIG ROCKS FIRST (click here for full blog post). February also brings many unanticipated obstructions, issues, and challenges that one needs to find a way to work around and overcome.
That said, here’s the update on my big five goals.
#1 – Focus & Simplify – Its harder to say NO in February as many, many, many new things pop up. As we get very busy in February and tasks start to pile up, it’s easy to forget about the “Big Rocks” and get lost in the NOW. And I know this was the case for the last two weeks in February as I kept using the expression “I have a number of emergency fires to put out first.” We cannot let the “emergency fires” dominate our schedule because then we will not have any time for the big rocks. Again, the key to focus & simplify is to (a) say “no” more often, (b) try not to add anything additional to the Big Rock lists and (c) review those Big Rock lists more often to stay on top of them. If I were to add a 4th item, I’d say get help to put out those intrusive “emergency fires.”
#2 – I need 2 academic research articles published this year – Again, of these 5 goals, this one is the most important. Before the end of February, the first of two articles was submitted to the review process. This is a positive step in the right direction. Academic articles need 45 to 60 days to be double-blind reviewed by the Editor and 2 or 3 reviewers. I should know, sometime in April if this article is viable or not. At the same time, I have been active on a second article and the goal is to have this one under review by the end of March (or at least Easter); the sooner, the better. If I need two academic articles published, the safe strategy is to put 3 or 4 articles in the review process. I hope to have that 2nd one in sooner rather than later so I can start working on the 3rd.
#3 – Run the Broad Street Run – Of the 5 goals, this is the one that I have made the most progress. I have been maintaining my Long Slow Distance (AKA LSD) runs. The 10 Mile Broad Street Run is a 90-minute race and my last LSD run in February was 66 minutes. So far, so good! In a similar “getting in shape” front, I started playing in a Sunday morning mens soccer league. Soccer and running use totally different muscle groups and I’m hurting. Plus any soccer skills I might have had are long gone. We are off to an 0-2 start dropping our first two games and I was one the field for 3 of the 5 goals scored against us (I play defense too so that’s not good). I love soccer but the goal is to not get hurt, as I want to continue my running program for Broad Street.
#4 – Take a Deep Dive into Twitter – of the five goals, this one I worked the least on in February. In January, I sent a lot of time hanging out in Twitter and I would easily log on daily. In February, I got much busier and I could go 3 or 4 days without hanging out. I would still Tweet meaningful stuff now and then and I still go through my followers/following lists on a regular basis but major time on the platform – no. The funny thing is – I’m not sure I missed anything or at least I do not feel any pressure that I missed something. Twitter is not email so I guess if you miss 99% of it, so what? We’ll see what happens in March.
#5 – Double my DigNuggetville Traffic – You know, I actually had some progress on this goal. I examined my Google Analytics metrics at the beginning of March and each month (e.g., December, January, and February) my monthly numbers averaged higher. I had the highest one-day spike in the history of the blog in February. Moreover, some of my older posts from November and December are starting to get some consistent SEO Google-juice. I also am following a consistent strategy of trying to get quotes or stories in the popular press. In Feburary, I had a solid placement on Forbes.com (click here) and MSNBC.com (click here); both of which help pull in traffic.
Thank you all for listening. Stay tuned for the next update around Easter.
Daniel M. Ladik, PhD
Associate Professor of Marketing
Stillman School of Business
Seton Hall University