Fireworks over a city celebrating the New YearOne of my favourite yearly exercises is the “three words” post (I’ve done it in 2013 and 2012 before). Essentially, I pick three words that I want to use to guide me through the New Year. They steer my business and personal life and ensure that I’m on a path toward success.

Last year, I used the words action, spontaneity, and organisation. Action and spontaneity were easy: I moved to New York City in 2013 as a result of a rapid-fire weeklong apartment search. And now that I’m here, I’m seizing opportunities as much as I can. Organisation is another easy one: this is the year I hired my first Virtual Assistant, embarking on a path of delegation.

For 2014, I’ve chosen some words that I hope will keep me on this trajectory…


I already got a great start with delegating in 2013, but I think I can go even further in 2014. By systemising and outsourcing more of my business, I can make myself more available to meet with clients, develop new products, and enhance the way the business runs.


I used the word “income” in my 2012 post, which is sort of related to “growth” but I’m thinking about it a little differently this year. Van Patten Media itself has fairly stable revenue, but our various side projects are—well, let’s just say they’re still side projects for a reason. In 2014, I’d like to see these side projects increase their revenues and grow to be self-sustaining enterprises in their own way.


While I want my various projects to grow (see: my last word) I also want to make sure I’m not taking on too much. I have a bit of a project-related ADD, and I tend to create all kinds of side projects on impulse (there’s last year’s word “spontaneity” creeping in!). In 2014, I want to focus on making sure my projects all fit neatly together, so I can keep them well organised and maintained. One great example of this is how I recently merged How I Booked It into StudioSleuth’s blog. The content was a great fit for StudioSleuth, and it’s a great example of the type of “strategic synergy” I want to foster.

So there we go: delegation, growth, and consolidation are my three words for 2014. What about you? What are your words of choice? Let me know in the comments!

photo credit: Christopher.Michel via photopin cc

Published by Chris Van Patten

I'm an entrepreneur and product lead, and owner of Tomodomo, through which I help companies build their digital publishing platform.

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