What did and did not work in 2019


Yep, it’s the end of the year so it’s time for all of the reflection blogs, and I’m included in that. Through this, I’ll be sharing what did and did not work in 2019 for Rhema Design Co.

What did work:

  • Honing in on my process and getting really clear on what my brand design timeline looks like.
  • Raising my prices: This year I raised my prices quarterly. It was time, for sure. Through this process I became infinitely more confident in the service I provide.
  • Writing out dream clients that I ended up working with.
  • This year I ended up getting another bridge job (that makes two). I definitely didn’t want this for my year, but it ended up being really beneficial to my financial health.
  • Relaunching my website. In July I got new brand photography done. Originally I had planned on updating my existing site with the new photos. Once I got the brilliant images back from my photographer, Kayley Lorraine, I knew I just couldn’t do that. It would be like putting lipstick on a pig, as the saying goes.
  • Recently, I’ve started getting my work photographed. This one is much more recent, but it still makes this list. In fact, as I wrote this I just wrapped up another photoshoot of my work. It’s been a goal for a while to begin using photographs instead of mockups to show my work. The fact that I have work to get photographed feels like huge progress this year.
  • In 2019 year I’ve been intentional about building community in both my personal and business life. Two weeks ago, I drove up to Nashville to visit a friend I met on Instagram. We now chat almost daily, and ‘officially’ know each other in real life now. What a huge freaking win.

What did not work:

  • Paying myself. THAT didn’t happen at all. In fact, I overdrew my accounts more than I’d like to admit (April was a tough month guys).
  • Earlier this year, I booked a client that I was incredibly excited about. In the process, I ignored many red flags and made concessions to my process in order to book them. I made the mistake of confusing a dream project with a dream client. Through this process, I’ve learned those are two very different things, and when you find someone that’s both you treasure it.
  • My booking system this year was not ideal. As soon as a client signed, I’d start them right away. This resulted in me drowning in work during the month of September, right when I was relaunching my own site and had a wild idea to post on Instagram for 30 days in a row (it was a lofty idea, but I saw huge growth from it). If you follow my on Instagram regularly, you’ve seen my dramatic saga of trying to establish a slots calendar. Long story short, it’s all done now and I have 13 branding slots open in 2020. I’m excited to test out this new and more efficient way of booking.

Heading into 2020, one of my goals is to be smarter with my prime work hours.

  • Not saying no enough. Heading into 2019 one of my goals was to say ‘no’ more to clients who weren’t my ideal. Heading into 2020, one of my goals is to be smarter with the time that I give away. Over the course of 2019, I’ve met with five different students multiple times. I love being able to share with these young women the lessons I’ve learned, invest in them, and see them grow, but I need to set some boundaries here. Most of this list is things I’m definite about, but this one is a little less firm. I’m unsure of what to do, because I always want to be generous with my time and knowledge, but in the end it’s been a bit overwhelming (suggestions welcome here).

So there it is, my list of what did and did not work in 2019. What about you? I’d love to hear some of the things that did and didn’t work for you and cheer you on in 2020.