December is a month of saying goodbye. A year ends and many of us take holiday time to be with friends and family. So we joke, “see you next year” to our vendors and clients (and our employees) as well as anyone we regularly network with. We even have a seasonal goodbye. In my part of the world, you can feel the switch from fall to winter as the days grow shorter and the temperature chills (Or for my readers on the other side of the world, spring has become summer and the temperature is going up).

This month brought a different kind of goodbye that I didn’t expect. A wonderful colleague and mentor lost his battle with cancer and died earlier this month.

John Reddish @GetResultsJohn Reddish and I met on a small business Twitter chat (#smallbizchat). He was someone I could joke with and share my dreams, goals and questions about my coaching business. We met in person when he was in town for a speaking engagement and we had such an amazing conversation over tapas. We talked about our businesses, the thinkers that have influenced us and our love of good food.  He was a talented coach who had a deft touch with encouragement and truth telling. So now, saying goodbye to him leaves an empty space. His mentorship was such a gift!

Goodbyes are often the harbingers of change.

When someone we respect and admire dies, we think of how to live with that empty space in our lives. Some people call that process “closure.” For someone who made a huge impact on us, our feelings of grief can include doing something in honor of them or to live up to what they expected from us when they were alive.

So I’m seeking change. Seeking something more. John always encouraged me to act on my real reason I coach small business owners. Unfortunately, I didn’t get to tell him what I was imagining for 2011.

Change is coming….

I”m pretty excited about 2011. These are some of the ideas I wanted to tell John and there’s so much I want to tell you (some of it hasn’t been totally ironed out yet).

  • Bloggertone-I will still be blogging on that site and some of the themes I cover there (e.g. doing business with the Global Irish and Ireland) will be posted here as well
  • Webinars-Free and not-so-free programmes will be offered over the year
  • Guest bloggers-More posts from interesting people and their ideas and/or how they build their small businesses
  • Interviews-Sharing ideas from different people, different settings. All so you can take a look at yourself and your business and see how you can be even better

The really big message…I’m going to be talking a lot about how you make the rules and shaping each action you take to build a solid business that you truly desire. Even how maintaining the entrepreneurial mindset is essential for an established small business. For some of you, this is going to sound revolutionary. For others, it will sound perfectly normal. No matter what this message sounds like to you, no matter where your business is targeted,  you are agents of change.

Goodbye…Hello…Living up to expectations

Although I won’t have John to bounce my ideas off or his gentle prodding for me to go through another edit of an idea, it’s still important to remember he believed in me. This belief is humbling, to say the least. So it’s my hope and intention that I can live up to his expectations. Otherwise, the goodbye will be very long and change delayed.

What are you saying goodbye to?

What would help you make your business stronger, more powerful, more sustainable, more…in 2011?

Who believes in you even when you don’t believe in yourself?