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2022 Retrospective and 2023 Look Forward

When I think of the past decade, there are the “Before Times” and “Now.”

The before times are, of course, anything before March 2020. A time when most of our lives have changed. A time when we let go of many preconceived notions.

2020 was a launching point for me, realizing I had more time in the day to do things and focus on my personal brand. 

I have dipped my toe in the water of content generation. I have thoroughly enjoyed engaging more with the community and hearing feedback on my ideas.

I realized that I had thought too tactically to that point. I was focused on individual projects or tasks rather than what I wanted my journey to be overall.

Now, after review, I know that my content is too broad. We need to focus on keeping ourselves on pace. I need help with this since I want to learn about everything.

There’s still a long way to go in my journey, but what I’ve learned most is “just do it.” I make mistakes, but iterating on them is what is essential. 

Isn’t that what an excellent Agile and DevOps process is all about?

So without further ado, this is my retrospective of 2022 and my accountability for 2023. 

The number 2022 leaning at a red wall of a room. 3D rendering illustration

The Retrospective of 2022

Overall, 2022 was great for me. I had a mix of new personal and professional experiences that allowed me the room to think differently. I realized that I was working too much and burning myself out.

Every time I stay in San Francisco, I stay at the Hilton Union Square. Due to conferences, it’s a centralized location, and the service is top-notch. Nothing shined a light on it quite like a hotel mishap at Dreamforce. I highly recommend Cityscape.

But, this year, I walked to my hotel room after getting my digital key to realize I was in the wrong place. I quickly looked at my confirmation and realized in horror that I had booked the Hilton Financial District instead. 

This error was due to me not allowing my brain to empty. We let things through the cracks if we’re constantly in work mode. This was a huge lesson learned for me.

So what else did I realize or start doing in 2022?

  • Started practicing self-care more. Work will always be there, not necessarily my health or youth.
  • Made it to Paris and Normandy. Normandy is a complete bucket list trip for me, and it did not disappoint.
  • Spoke on the DevOps Diary Podcast and a Webinar for DevOps. Thanks to Gearset for allowing me this extraordinary opportunity to share my experiences.
  • Attended DevOps Dreamin’, TDX, Midwest Dreamin’, and Dreamforce.
  • Spoke at Midwest Dreamin’ about the Power of SOQL for Admins
  • Rebranded my personal site to focus on my content.
  • Published twelve posts. Only half of my goal of two a month!
  • Earned three Salesforce certifications. The ecosystem rewards those who have them, so I have caved and started to attain them. Shout out to Trailhead Military for their incredible resources.
  • At work, I (or my team):
    • implemented Mulesoft proof of concept
    • stood up a robust DevOps pipeline
    • hired a team of ten
    • deployed a contract lifecycle management platform
    • went live on Service Cloud
    • executed a Pardot agreement
    • began implementing NetSuite
    • deployed Okta for identity management
    • launched three bespoke new processes within Salesforce

2023 red write at black glossy wall background - 3D rendering illustration

Looking forward to 2023

I have a lot of goals when I think about 2023, and I need to pare them down. But, I like to detail what I can accomplish since I believe in stretch goals.

High Priority

  • At least one speaking (conference) engagement in 2023
  • 130 days of posts on Twitter and LinkedIn – 50% of working days in 2023
  • 39 blog posts – 75% of weeks in 2023
  • Get to the gym at least 3 times a week.
  • 5 weeks of time off
  • At least one international trip
  • At work, I (or my team):
    • Launch NetSuite as a replacement for Quickbooks Online
    • Deploy Pardot as a replacement for Hubspot
    • Go Live with SMS for Service Cloud
    • Rollout Iterable for event-driven customer journeys
    • Refine our DevOps and CI/CD pipeline
    • Instrument/Log our Salesforce events to Datadog

Lower Priority

  • Obtain Application Architect (Sharing & Visibility Architect, Data Architect)
  • Obtain Mulesoft Developer Level 1 certification
  • One podcast spot
  • Pick up a hobby (I started learning how to lockpick as a flow activity)
  • At least one paid engagement for Right Sized Tech.
  • At work, I (or my team):
    • Continue our journey through Documentation and Testing.
    • Conduct more education
    • Burndown technical debt that we inherited from our partner
    • Procure an HRIS

So the hard part? Getting organized and being held accountable for these items. Reminding myself that I set these goals for a reason and should stick to them.

Even as I think about posting content and engaging with the community, I have to remember the correct metrics. Not just posting for the sake of posting but learning as I go. 

Throughout my career, I was taught to write a particular way, focusing on technical writing and removing personality. Publishing for others is different; I need to consider what others don’t know. We connect dots in our heads and allow our experiences to bridge knowledge gaps.

So, that’s it. That’s what I did in 2022 and what I look forward to doing in 2023. This is a post for me to keep myself accountable. To allow me to look back in 2032 and understand where my head was at.

For those who made it this far, what do you think?

What are your goals for 2023? What are you the proudest of from 2022?

Last, what would you like me to tackle in content? Thanks for taking the time to recap 2022 with me.

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