I’ve started and re-started this post several times over the past few days.

Taking some time off work since 23rd December has given me a bit of a break to look back on a hectic three weeks of the month, as well as taking stock of the year as a whole.

Early morning dog walk.

It’s hard to know where to start writing this month’s notes and to avoid repeating a bunch of clichés about the past twelve months.

As I read back over the monthnotes I’ve written this year, it’s interesting to reflect on the way that Covid-19 changed the course of the year so dramatically, both at work and at home.

The discussions we were having in late February about enacting business continuity measures at Deeson as early Covid-19 appeared in the UK seem like a distant memory.

The adrenaline and energy of those early days feels obscured by the many fresh challenges we’ve faced every week since then.

Since then the need for resilience and adaptability in the face of rapidly evolving situations has been at the heart of life at work and home.

And as we head into the eye of the Covid-19 storm once again, we need to continue to maintain focus on planning for multiple scenarios that might unfold in the next few months.

The promise of vaccination rollouts offers a light at the end of tunnel, yet a cursory look back at 2020 reminds us that timescales for anything Covid-19 related are unpredictable.

My hunch is that the impact of vaccination will follow this pattern and that optimistic predictions of its widespread impact by Easter are unrealistic.

I also look back on the changes that 2020 led to and appreciate the colleagues I have the pleasure of working with.

As a rapidly growing business, we’ve welcomed many new people to our teams during 2020. Many of them haven’t had the opportunity to meet in person, yet have formed new effective teams tackling gnarly problems that none of us could have foreseen just a few months earlier.

So as we approach the last few hours of 2020, I am genuinely optimistic about 2021 – not because of any predictability but – because I truly believe in the people I share my life with – family, friends and colleagues – to deal with whatever 2021 throws at us.

I know there’ll be ups and downs on the way. Things will happen that we don’t expect.

There’ll be wins that we didn’t see coming and downs that didn’t feature in anyone’s plans.

But based on what I’ve seen over the past 10 months, I’m very confident that with the same resilience, commitment and communication that I’ve seen in 2021, even with the depleted reserves of energy and stamina, together we can face 2021 with the same brilliance that we faced 2020.

And I truly hope and believe that when I write this post in 12 months time, there’ll be continuing positive news to reflect upon and celebrate. I keep my fingers crossed.

With best wishes for 2021 – happy new year!