This year feels like it’s been a decade long, but we’ve just about made it. As 2020 finally comes to an end, we’re taking a short look back…because a long one might be a bit too much to stomach.
For Q+M, the year started on a high note. We enjoyed a strong 2019 and hit January motivated by new projects and continuing work with past clients we’ve had relationships with for years. We really thrive on the mix of the new and the refreshed, and as January turned to February, even the whispers out of Wuhaun didn’t have us too concerned.
By March, however, we were quick to spot where things were headed. Even before cases hit Michigan, we were working with clients across the country to supporting the adjustments they were anticipating. From recruiting to moving services online, even helping one client troubleshoot their first Zoom call, we knew we could play a role in keeping clients moving ahead as the world ground to a halt.
At the same time that our office moved to work remotely, we hired Sales Director Wes Sovis to the Traverse City location. Wes’ first day with Q+M was just twenty-four hours before the state locked down; talk about a tough time to start selling. Luckily, Wes’s enthusiasm and professionalism quickly saw him take challenges in stride. He was quick to bring on quality companies we could do a lot to help, plus he added his expertise to a number of creative projects.
By midsummer, it was more than obvious that the inevitable move to digital was accelerated by the pandemic. We were quick to add paid digital to many of our accounts to support the many transitions to relying almost entirely on online sales. There was no way even Ashley could do it all, and we were lucky to find Nikki! We’ve never had someone walk in and kick ass so quickly, and Nikki, paired with Ashley’s experience and Kieley’s management, has turned into a dream team.
And no matter what we do, at the end of the day, design is what we do best. Both James and Catherine have grown as designers over the years and they always bring their best to every single graphic they create. From websites to logos to social graphics, their creativity is really our best product.
I hate to use a sports analogy, but I’m going to. In baseball, the term “small ball” refers to doing little things to manufacture runs. It’s laying down a bunt, taking a walk, hitting a sacrifice fly, and stealing second base. It’s the small, incremental way to win games, one run at a time, instead of sitting back and hoping for a home run. This year, we didn’t rely on our big bats to support customers. We all invested time in communicating with businesses on new ideas, new services, and new ways to bring in customers, even if that meant encouraging them to stay home and order online.
In a way, it’s no different than what our clients have been doing for nine months now. We’ve been absolutely inspired by the constant creativity we’ve seen from restaurants, non-profits, municipalities, and retailers that have put into staying open in these incredibly challenging times.
Looking ahead to 2021, there are still some dark times ahead for businesses and for those who’ve contracted COVID-19. This isn’t over by a long shot. But there is light at the end of the tunnel, and we’re committed to being there with our clients every step of the way, even if it’s just helping them reset their passwords.
From all of us, have a safe and Merry Christmas and a healthy new year!
Al, Kieley, Wes, Ashley, Nikki, James, Catherine, and Cody