Weeknotes 44–54: Happy Birthday To Us!
The last ten weeks have moved fast, so here’s a quick catch up with the Convivio team…
I last wrote weeknotes at the end of April, when I’d just been on a retreat with some other agency founders. We’d started the user research phase on a project, and the consultancy phase of another one. I also mentioned that some of our client payments were overdue.
Late payment continued to be an issue, which has meant that some of my time was spent managing cashflow and chasing invoices. It seems that large parts of government have been adopting new outsourced accounts payable services and they’re pretty rubbish. In one case our client sent us screenshots where they were told the accounting system would be down for two weeks for maintenance so no supplier payments could be made!
Thankfully that all got sorted in the end.
We’ve been deep into the delivery phases of some of our projects, which has kept us all busy, and on top of that a few of us have been working on proposals and discussions for potential next projects.
We’re in a good place for an agency where we’re close to fully booked, and have even turned away some work so as not to become too maxed out. Being able to be selective is exactly where we want to be, because we have a very clear focus on what makes a ‘Convivio’ project. It means we’re now very picky about which RFPs we respond to, and most of our work is coming from referral or repeat business.
Our order book has also begun to shape up well, and we have bookings through until next May.
We finished our first year at the end of June with better results than we’d forecast too.
That meant that our first birthday celebration was well-earned. We headed to Manchester, where Mike curated a couple of days of co-working, topped by eating and drinking in some of his favourite places. Like the Queen, we’re having an official birthday too — and will be celebrating with families in September with a weekend by the sea in a couple of big houses.
Metrics and Transparency
We’ve been working on developing a dashboard for the business, with some key metrics. The aim is to have something that anyone in the business can look at at any time and get a clear picture of how we’re doing. We’ll post separately about that when we launch it.
Free Range Working
Lewis has also been blogging about our free-range approach to work. First in stop clock-watching, measure effectiveness not hours, and then in how we create a flexible working culture.
Lewis attended, and helped out at, the UX London event.
He also wrote a guest post about planning your prototype with a customer journey map for the well-known Mind The Product blog.
Now that we’re entering our second year there are a few things we want to do to move to the next level of maturity for a consulting business. We’ll be writing about those in the coming weeks.
Thanks for following our journey so far. I’ll work to be better at doing more regular weeknotes!
Convivio helps organisations to work better for people.
We do this mainly by helping them transform their services using digital tools, but also by spreading new ways of working.