#138 The new beginning

Happy Sunday, everyone.

One of the things about this time of year I love is the advent of new beginnings and endings that bring positive change. Almost everyone I talk to is starting something new and sunsetting something else.

At Calm Capital we’ve had more than a few entrepreneurs reach out to us in the last few weeks, hoping to sell their current business so they can start a new one. And I’ve talked with several in-house creative folks who are leaving their jobs and venturing out on their own to provide design and/or copy services to soon-to-be clients.

Recently I ran across an old Field Notes notebook that held the original handwritten notes I made for starting my first agency, in December 2008. It’s funny to see how my mindset was back then compared to today so many years later.

Here are my notes from last week (in 2008).

Notes on starting an agency

  • Focus on three capabilities

    • Scribes: Copywriting for businesses

    • Tribes: Product Launches for startups

    • Vibes: Brand and design work

  • Let’s not add headcount and build teams of freelancers for each project

  • Keep overhead low with good communication

  • We can do almost anything with cross-functional teams of 3-5 people

  • Done or not done in 1-2 weeks... What can fit in that time frame?

  • Two questions to earn trust with clients:

    • What do you want to get done 1st (less important but quick?)

    • What is the ONE IMPORTANT THING?

  • Daily: What are we doing today and tomorrow? What issues are preventing us from moving forward?

  • Weekly: What have we accomplished that we can share internally and with clients?

I went out on my own full-time because my job was moved to Connecticut and I didn’t want to go with it. The company let me go but was gracious enough to hire me back for several weeks to train my replacement.

So this time of year always makes me think of wrapping up my career as an employee and starting a new one as a  founder.

It’s like the Dan Wilson song…

Every new beginning comes from some other beginning's end.

Until next time, friends.


P.S. Maybe the coolest thing I’ve seen in a while. It’s like building a house with legos. Check out Gablokuk.

P.P.S Loved this holiday ad from Apple

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