Well, it’s been over a year since I posted anything. Pretty bad. The truth is, there has been some major stuff happen in my own life over the past year, as well as the business. To put it simply, business has been good. Too good, in fact. Yes, that can happen, especially when unexpected health issues put you back and things snowball.
The good news is I’m coming out of this now, and made some fairly serious decisions. I had to decide if this business was to stay a one person shop. If so, it would have meant that I would have to say “no” a whole lot more than I was, and I would also have to limit the scope of what I do.
I hate limits. That was one of the things that drove me out of working for corporations in the first place.
So, growth it was. I considered maybe looking around at a few other competent web designer types for a possible partnership, but that entails a whole other level of complexity. Finding a business partner is almost as serious as finding a marriage partner, and it’s catch 22 for me - I don’t have the time to put into building that relationship because of the business at hand. I considered hiring another web designer, but there’s a whole creative and sales process involved that I’m not sure would translate. It could happen down the road, but people generally hire me for me.
In the end, I hired a web development assistant. So far it’s really helping out. I happen to have a bunch of work that involves content input for a few sites, a task that is time consuming to do properly, so this role is perfect for that. My new assistant, Sherry (not the Sherry I married) has been great and hopefully will end up being more and more involved.
Another big development is the web hosting side of things. I have enough clients that host with me now, plus some additional clients with bigger needs that I made a decision there too. I now run my own dedicated server, co-located in a major Montreal data centre with the possibility to add more. I will have to take a little time to consolidate all the other accounts onto this server but I think the payoff will be huge in terms of performance and control. I’m looking into the “Diefenbunker” data centre in Debert as a future growth opportunity as well.
And finally, today, I’m putting in a real ticketing support system. I never really thought I’d need one in the web design business, but here we are. I won’t use it for actual website design jobs, but there are enough small requests now that aren’t about designing a new website that I’d hate to lose track of one. Not to mention, I’m also moving into ongoing support contracts with some clients, so this will make it much easier to track. I’m also going to use this system with my new assistant.
So there you have it. Stuff changes, we either adapt and grow or we get stay rigid and get run over by the monster we created. Stay tuned for more changes on the way,.