The week between Christmas and New Year’s is really strange. Most people completely check out during this time of year. If they’re not physically checked out on vacation, they’re mentally checked out – as in, “Call me after the New Year because although I have nothing to do in my office this week, I can’t commit to any decisions right now.” I guess not committing to do any work seems pretty sensible when nobody else is doing any work.
The leave-me-alone-I’m-not-working-right-now attitude is especially true in the deal business. And it doesn’t only apply to Christmas, but to Labor Day, Easter, Passover, Memorial Day, the 4th of July, Yom Kippur/Rosh Hashanah, and probably a few other holidays I’m missing. Basically, on Wall Street, anyone bringing a new deal to market during one of these holidays is either really desperate, or an idiot.
There are some exceptions of course. Like when I was publishing The PIPEs Report I recall that the last week of the calendar year was busy because lots of small public-reporting companies needed to put cash on their balance sheet in order to avoid the dreaded year-end “going concern” warning from their auditor. That warning was the death knell for dozens of small companies financing with PIPEs.
Anyway, I’m completely off track. I’m not using this week’s blog to complain (although as a New Yorker I reserve the right to complain whenever I want to). What I wanted to write about was my 2016 New Year’s resolution.
For the past handful of years, I’ve had, quite literally, the same New Year’s resolution: To be on time.
For those who know me, they know me as chronically tardy. This is not a good thing. From starting office meetings to picking my kids up at soccer practice, I’m embarrassed to say that I’m usually not punctual.
The way I’ve generally justified my propensity towards lateness is that I’m not really late, just a little late. But it doesn’t matter I guess. Late is late. And 2016 is my year.
I’m not resolving to eat less junk food, exercise more, or live a more productive and fulfilling life. This shouldn’t be so hard. My sights aren’t set unreasonably high, I think.
Then this week while I was sitting at my desk and enjoying my office staycation, it occurred to me: I haven’t been able to keep my New Year’s resolution because I’m going about time all wrong. So instead, this year, I’m not resolving to be “on time.” I’m resolving to be “timely.”
It’s a subtle difference but for me, I think it really captures the essence of what I aspire to. According to Merriam Webster’s dictionary, the definition of timely is “not happening too late.” Synonyms include “well timed” and “at the right time” and “opportune.”
Within the context of my work at Dealflow, for sure, this is the right approach. I’ve been far more interested in being timely with new ideas and product development than I have with “being on time.” See the difference? (Don’t worry, you’re not alone.)
In any case, I think I’ve finally figured this one out. 2016 will be the year I’m timely. I figure most resolutions are broken within two weeks of the New Year and mine appears totally doable. So I’m good with it.
In closing my first blog of the year, I’d like to thank you for reading. The “Series D” Blog will continue to offer cutting-edge commentary on the emerging area of online capital formation and deal sourcing. Along the way, I hope to inform (and entertain too).
So the New Year has finally come and gone. The office staycation come and gone. Now what?
I guess I’ll go back to work.