There is something about the New Year celebration that is almost like wiping a slate clean.
A chance to start all over. A fresh new beginning. A time that we invoke resolutions and resolve to lose weight, quit smoking, quit drinking, slow down, speed up or whatever it is we want to change about our life.
It is a good feeling. Certainly once of uncertainty though. What will the new year bring? Will it be a good year or a bad year? For me, 2009 was the pits. I began well. In fact, it was so well that I felt horrible listening to the stories of people in Vegas. Everyone was talking up how bad sales were and how bad the economy was and how profit margins were falling. It was doom and gloom. I had just finished a banner year in 2008 adding three new vehicles, hiring four more full-time chauffeurs, and ending the year 17% up. I didn’t even want to tell people that.
Well, it just took a little longer to get to Bakersfield, California, but the doom and gloom arrived. It packed a punch. I had clients go bankrupt and leave us holding the bag including big businesses such as Big West Refinery, the parent company to Flying J Truck stops. We saw one client after another go belly up. The State of California ran out of money to pay bills and guess what? It is a client too. I never thought I would get an IOU from the state and have a major oil company burn us. All this scaled down our annual summer vacation to Pismo Beach, California. I should have been in Maui, New Orleans, New York, or Montego Bay. Even Vegas would have been better, but we learn to make do. We experienced several family tragedies involving death, but let’s not relive that. Our limo-bus with a mere 30,000 miles on it had a major mechanical malfunction 100 miles away from home at the peak of the Christmas season. It was out of service for 14 days and we lost $14,000 as it flew out the window.
Yeah, clearly not a great year. So, now we say good bye to the good memories and bad of 2009.
We say hello to the new and unborn dreams and hopes of 2010. I look forward to the new clients I will land this year. I will be more aggressive in Internet marketing. I will find better ways to do the same things we do every day. I will do my best to stay educated on trends such as social networking and what’s hot and what’s not. I will strive to give my business card to at least one new person every single day. If I miss out on Sunday, I will find two on Monday. If I give out 365 business cards in 2010, I am bound to land at least four new clients if I have only a one percent response. Those are the dollars of four people who were not previously giving me dollars and I just know opportunity is waiting for me to tap. This is going to be my year. This is going to be the decade that defines me and I am running out the gate at full speed. I have already picked all the seminars I plan to attend at the International LCT Show in Las Vegas, Jan. 25-27, to stimulate, motivate, and help me do a better job to achieve my goals. See you there, class!
-- Jim Luff, LCT contributing editor
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