December 27, 2021

End of Year Reflections

There was laughter. There was innovation. There were hard decisions. There was a giant 12 foot tall whiteboard. There were so many tacos.

Right now, between holidays and seasons, it feels like a good time to reflect and check in with the priorities we set for ourselves a few months back. At the end of summer 2021, KDS met for a half day retreat at The Mothership (aka District New Haven Cowork) on the future of our firm. There was laughter. There was innovation. There were hard decisions. There was a giant 12 foot tall whiteboard. There were so many tacos. At the end of it, what emerged was a really exciting vision for how to restructure KDS for future success for ourselves and our clients. What’s coming up in 2022 is so exciting for us, and we to share it with you!

Really, what’s happening is that we’re in a growth phase. Ramping up, especially for a microbusiness like KDS, can be super-bumpy and awkward, with fits and starts and spasms. Like a teenage boy at a school dance. Or Elaine on Seinfeld.

Our first priority was to staff-up and create some more bandwidth/headspace for Christina to develop new business relationships and think big thoughts. This fall, we created two full-time positions and are bringing on a third in the new year! We have been working with our human resources partners at the Human Resources Consulting Group on some incredible forward-thinking workplace policies and tactics to attract, retain, and manage talent.

We’ve made great strides towards fully integrating our technological resources and train all of our team members on best practices in using them. We have completed data migrations, documented our processes, and engaged a consultant (Nick at Ask A Nerd) to help us with our tech and software troubleshooting.

We also decided to stroll on over to the 21st century and get our social media game going. KDS has engaged with Janice Cupee and her firm Cerasee Media to set a digital marketing strategy and develop content for our various platforms. With our Communications and Operations Manager, Phoebe Zinman, they are refining KDS’s voice and vision. We are finalizing content for our long-awaited website re-launch – stay tuned for that baby! We’re so proud of how she’s coming along!

With great growth comes great responsibility – we want KDS to be a place where the best want to come and stay! We’ve developed internal on-boarding processes to make the entry into KDS as smooth as possible for both employee and our clients. And we are implementing some incredible new workplace policies and benefits in 2022 that are designed to provide more of what people want and need for themselves and their families: time off.

Way back in August, over tacos, we identified the ways in which we wanted to improve and expand our capacity, to work better and not harder, to champion work/life balance in a field that is notoriously deficient at prioritizing that, to cement new working relationships, and to plant seeds for future growth. From our vantage point here, in the early days of December, we did pretty well. We checked the boxes on our to-do list and got a return on our investment in infrastructure. But more than that, we affirmed our vision for what KDS can be and the changes that we can help enact in our own communities.

In order to see the change, we have to be the change. And we’re just getting started