Make Time for the Future


New can be frightening.

For example, whenever my mother would decide she wanted new curtains hanging over the kitchen sink, I would nearly kick and scream with disagreement when she asked for my opinion.

The color was weird. The length was wrong. It was simply new and different and I didn’t like it.

Working in the media industry I’ve had to get use to new. As a magazine, we are continually changing and evolving into the best business resource possible. Sometimes, that means re-evaluating processes or changing our ways, for example, in how we collect ads. Other times, it means brainstorming ideas for new features and untouched avenues through which we can reach our readers.

You too, Affiliate, probably have big dreams and goals. You probably have plans you cannot wait to see come to life. If you’re anything like me, however, you too might be unable to see past immediate tasks.

Daily, I have multiple responsibilities that involve Box Pro Magazine, and even other areas of our media company. I have items on my to-do list that cannot wait, and no matter how hard I try, I can never seem to finish that list before another task drops onto my desk.

And yet, the future is still insisting on turning up tomorrow. I cannot hold it off, even if my daily tasks seem to be ever increasing.

So, how do we, people surrounded by day-to-day needs and to-do’s, allow any time at all for the future?

First and foremost, it is essential to set goals. As a company, we have goals. And as an individual, I have quarterly goals, known as Rocks. These are typically overarching projects or improvements that I can complete in 90 days. Sometimes, a Rock is simply researching an idea or devising a plan of implementation for another content outlet. But, I have direction for the next 90 days and I will meet once a week with the editor-in-chief to discuss, problem solve and report on my progress in accomplishing those Rocks.

The second thing is simply setting aside time.

This is something I struggle with. But I would advise to designate an hour or two each week to think and plan for the future. Maybe pull in a couple of your staff and have a brain vomiting session. As an editorial team, we are about to start monthly meetings in which all we do is look at the B2B industry and brainstorm for the future of our own magazines.

When today seems so enormous and demanding, it can feel a bit impossible to look to tomorrow. But, I promise you, your business and your membership will thank you for bringing about positive change. So, make time this week for the future.

Heather is the editor for Box Pro Magazine. Contact her at