126 – Why there was a break in the podcast
Welcome to this episode of retain FM My name is Pete Everitt and today, I would like to talk to you a little bit about why there’s been a bit of a break in the podcast, you see, the time of recording this episode 126. There has been around about a three month break in the delivery of retain FM. And some of you may have noticed some of you may not have noticed, and others may have thought thank God that he stopped yapping on us for a little while. But anyway, I hope, I hope there’s not many of the latter in in the listenership at all. Anyway, I just wanted to come back and drop an episode that explains a little bit about why there has been a break in the podcast. And and to say that we’re we’re gonna start, you know, generating regular content again, and I can’t wait to to start sharing this stuff with you. So to begin with, why was there a bit of a break in the podcast? So I’ll be I’ll be perfectly honest, you know, the COVID lock downs in the UK have taken a bit of a toll on on us as a family and on my time. And I think if I really look back in and scrutinize Why, why we were in a position where we were in January, it really goes back to the start of the second lockdown in the UK, which was in November 2020. And normally, I like to run with kind of a buffer of three or four episodes of the podcast pre recorded.
And during that lockdown in November, they got used. So as we entered Christmas, and then into January, and then there was no buffer of content. The second thing that then happened was that, you know, we we recorded podcasts up until Christmas as we normally do. And then I took a break for a couple of weeks, still with still without that buffer. And then in the UK, we the kids went back to school in January for one day. And that was when our government decided that we were then going to go into a full lockdown. So no, sir, all the schools were closed. And that content just didn’t get created. And you know, with kids at home and having to figure out zoom school and, and all of that other stuff that goes along with it. It was it was just one thing too, too much, I suppose. And now I’m can’t blame everything on the COVID lockdown. And that’s not really my point at all. I’m just, I’m just being honest with where we were with scheduling, and that the timing of some of this stuff.
Also, some of you may know that I have had a problem with my shoulder, a recurring problem in my left shoulder in the past, and that had flared up again at the end of 2020. And I was waiting for appointments with our physio in order to start treatment and get that sorted. And whilst you know, I did have some appointments in 2020. And then they got pushed, I was told because of the COVID pandemics and lockdowns, etc. And sure enough, towards the end of January this year, I actually got appointments that were fixed, and I could start some treatment. Now the great news is that my treatment on my shoulder has now finished I’m back to full mobility, no pain, no, no sort of odd sensations and stuff that I was getting in there. And so that’s all good. But of course, whilst that was happening, it was something else we needed to accommodate in the midst of zoom schools, etc, etc. So, you know, it was important for me that I did get that sorted. And back in November for Black Friday, we also pre launched the advanced modules of our demystifying SEO course. And the whole deal with those advanced modules was that they would be delivered in January this year. Now,
with everything else that I’ve just explained that one of the two modules did get delivered in January, the other ones slipped a little bit towards the end of February. But it was important that that was content that got prioritized because people had paid for it ultimately, because it was part of a pre sale. And, you know, the people had to put their trust in me that I would deliver this content. And whilst the group were hugely understanding as to why there was some delays, it was something that was really important for me to deliver on, you know, I fully believe that you need to deliver on your promises. And if something’s going to be done, you say something’s going to be done then it needs to be done, it needs to hit the top of the priority list. So that was another issue another sort of pull on my time I suppose.
We then had we then as you may or may not know I also co run SEOHive, a white label SEO service alongside my agency here in the UK and
SEOhive was going through a bit of a rocky patch, we had some things that happened. And I might talk a bit more about them in a later episode. But we had some things that happened, which needed to be rectified not meant that there was some relatively quick staffing changes, there were some changes in processes, there were some changes to, to the way we delivered work, how we communicated with clients, actually, coming out the end of it, I can see that we’re now in a far better place and a lot stronger than we were before we went into it. However, I’ll be honest, it was a bit of a crap time. And I’d be lying if, if Jeff and I didn’t have the odd sort of conversation about is this the right thing to be doing? Should we be doing this? Or should we be doing something else? But we are committed to it? That’s, you know, of course we are we’re committed to all of the agencies that we’ve helped. And to top all that off was sort of positive note, on April, the first 2021, SEO hive had its first birthday. And in that first year, we helped support over 100 agencies, and 165 individual websites. And when I saw that number, that was one of the driving forces that thought No, you know what, we need to continue with this, this is not something that just because it’s a bit crap. Now, just because it’s a bit hard now we can need to give up. No, we’d be letting too many people down there, we need to get this right, there’s a model, it works, we can see that it works we’ve got, we can see the results in client websites.
So we need to sort of knuckle down and plow on through this. And I’m pleased to say that we did and we’ve we feel a lot better about it now. And we’re in a far better position.
Of course, in amongst all all of that stuff. I’ve just spoken about the agency that I run here in the UK, and that didn’t stop, you know, we’ve got a team of nine people here in the UK, and they needed work, they needed management, they needed projects, we needed business development, we needed finance for a year and happened whenever more than a month or so away from a VAT bill. So there’s that there was all of that just general stuff that none of that stopped.
And I you know, part of my reflection about the last year, where, you know, I’ve not stopped working and in many respects, that’s been a fortunate place for me to be.
But on the same note, without having that structure of family breaks and holidays and school holidays and and Gabs, my wife working with us, you know, she she’s such a fount of knowledge about all of the admin stuff that goes on in the background, without having her there to, you know, to bounce things off and to, to keep a lot of the management stuff on the straight and narrow. And personally, I feel like the last 12 months or so have been a bit of a treadmill. And it’s just at times it feels like it’s a treadmill that you can’t get off. And ultimately, that had an impact on my mental health. And I was surprised actually, when I sat down and thought about that a little bit, because I’ve never been a sort of person to consider my mental health. All that all that strongly I I actually cope quite well with stress. I’m one of those people that manages to turn stress or pressure into positive action, it focuses me.
And working to deadlines has always been something I’ve thrived on. And you know, pushing myself but within that factoring in times of recuperation.
And what I found with 2020, or the COVID pandemic, and particularly how it’s been managed here in the UK, is that life did become like a treadmill, I would be sat at the desk at a particular time and I would have to do this job and I would have to do that job. And then I’d have to have these zoom calls. And then I would have to do this and and almost as the year went on, taking time off became a
bit of a taboo subject, you know, why? Why would you take time off wherever you got to go? What do you mean, you’re not working? In fact, and this is a really true story. Back in December 2020. I was contacted by a new client, I was contacted because one of their members of staff had worked somewhere else and we’d serve them design and build them a website in the past and they they’d moved roles and they needed in their new position a new website.
And they were adamant that it had to be live before Christmas. And this discussion was happening or maybe the I don’t know the first second third of December, something like that. So it was a bit of a tight turnaround but could we help. So we put a structure that they didn’t want anything overly complicated and thankfully, we kind of, we always keep December as a bit of a loose month because because you lose such a chunk of it to Christmas anyway. We and you’ve got Black Friday, November. You know, we have
Push through to Black Friday, we then get everything set up for Christmas for our clients. And then we kind of have a bit of a sort of loose approach to the rest of the month with regards to our schedule. So it worked, it was fine. But I had said that I was going to take the week leading up to Christmas is a week off. So my last day at work would be the 18th of December. And because I’d sort of said that, and we were winding down, a number of our staff had also said, Well, look, if we’re doing that, that’s fine, we’ll, we’ll take that week off as well. And I, you know, the the team has worked like absolute Trojans all last year, I was more than happy to give him some time off. And, you know, holiday allowances certainly hadn’t been touched in, in in the way that we’d normally sort of work. And, you know, so anyway, that was that was the deal. So I explained to this, this client, look, yeah, we can, we can absolutely do that. But it’s not going to go live on December the 23rd, which is when they wanted it to happen. And in fact, they were really pushing for Christmas Eve, and I said, definitely no, um, but you know, we need to work for it to be live by December the 18th. So that’s, what, five days early?
And the client was outraged. How dare I suggest they they weren’t able to fit in with that timescale? Because they had another three and a half days work between the end of the 18th and Christmas, then breaking up for Christmas? What What did I think I was doing? So, you know, I’ve never had a disagreement with a client before, because I’ve suggested or offered or insisted that we deliver work early, it was just, it was just ridiculous. But this was, this seems to be a sort of example as to where the world has come to in this weird COVID pandemic mentality that’s going on. And,
yeah, so as somebody that’s always sort of coped with stress quite well, and never really had to
approach that side of my mental health, I suppose. And, eventually, I did have to take the, you know, take the decision that I need some time I need, I need a two or three week break here. And I took two and a half weeks off over Christmas and New Year, and was really, really sort of privileged that I was in the position to do that. But also sort of felt guilty to begin with, I was taking this time and, you know, I purposefully took it to fit around school holidays, and, and all of that spend time with my boys and my wife and you know, to make the best of Christmas that was going to be a bit strange, where we weren’t going to see grandparents and, and all that kind of stuff. But nonetheless, to take a break.
So, um, you know, that’s that was where that was where I was, that’s where I’ve been for the last two or three months, maybe a bit longer than that, and sort of just just processing and making sure that stuff happens, but also making sure that I make time for myself because otherwise, everything, it just becomes all consuming and overwhelming.
And you see this kind of hooks in with the Perth personal ethos I have if something’s worth doing, and it’s worth doing well, and really that that comes down to my grandmother, who passed away six years ago now. And, you know, she, she was very selective in the things that she did, she wasn’t the most healthy of people, she had a number of health conditions, not none of them sort of completely debilitating, or anything, but she had a number of health conditions. And she just knew that she couldn’t do anything. So she everything’s very, so she would pick and choose that what she was going to do. But when she picked something that that was going to be her thing, she would engage with it 110% Because ultimately, she knew that in order to do this, she was giving up other opportunities. So she needed to, to make the most out of
out of the things that she chose to do. And, you know, yeah, so because because of all of that this is all coming back to why there’s been a break in the podcast. Ultimately, I felt like I was letting you guys down. I felt like I was letting the podcast down. I felt like I was letting myself down a little bit. And actually, if I couldn’t bring myself to just bringing myself to scrape something together wasn’t going to be good enough. That’s that’s really the point I’m trying to make. I I wanted to clear the decks, get my commitments out of the way, get my head sorted, relieve a bit of pressure, all of that kind of stuff.
And then wanted to come back to the podcast where I could have a commitment to it where I could, you know, start to schedule recordings properly again, where I could,
you know, know that I could back some content to build up that that little buffer or
If that kind of stuff. So that’s, that’s why there was a break in the podcast.
And I’m more than happy to discuss any of any part of that with people if they’re bothered. And, you know, maybe if people find any of those topics interesting, or I could help give advice to people, I’m not saying I’m an expert in any of it, but I needed to, that was what I needed to do. And it came to a point where it was right was, it’s now or it’s never. So I’ve taken the time and I’ve looked after myself, my shoulder is better. My mental health is, I feel a lot more positive about stuff, we’ve got some plans in place for this year. Partly, you know, due to the COVID vaccine rollout in the UK, we’ve been able to plan some things further out in the year, we’ve got building projects happening at home, whenever I don’t sit still very easily now, neither my wife or I do. So you know, we always have to have irons in the fire. And I think that was maybe one of the things was that we didn’t have those extra irons in the fire. We didn’t really know what was coming next or where it was coming from. We were just passengers in a journey. And so yeah, so we’ve taken time to figure that out. We’ve delivered everything that we were contractually bound to deliver that people have paid for. And we’ve improved systems and processes, we’ve been working in the background, we’ve been, you know, rolling things out in SEO hive, that when you’re managing up to 100 agencies, that’s that’s, you know, just making one change can often mean that needs to be replicated 100 times. So it’s it all of that stuff’s been going on in the background. And, you know, I hope I haven’t become too much of a stranger to you. Whilst whilst all that’s been going on, and as I mentioned, I had to keep workflow through the agency, I have staff that depend on a solid turnover in the company, and that needed to take priority. So there we are. And
in many respects, I do need to say that it did feel a bit weird not delivering the podcast, what also has happened in the past three months is back in March, the podcast turned three years old. And it blows my mind that I you know, I’ve been creating content for you on and off admittedly, for the last three years. And, and it’s, you know, I’ve learned a lot I’ve developed a lot, hopefully, the quality of the podcast has improved a lot, my first tenant, shocking, please never go in there. Never go and listen to those, you know, you’d get you know, nobody needs to be put through that. But
you know, things have things have changed. And when, when I think that I’ve been doing it almost every week for the last three years to then think I’ve taken three months off, feels really weird and felt really weird at the time. So it’s really great to be back. And as I said, generally everything is in a better place than it was three months ago. So we’ve got some cool things coming up. I’ve got some content pre recorded, I’m working on getting some interviews lined up again, life is going to go back to normal life is the the podcast is going to come back, I’m not going to guarantee that it will be every week infinitum. But there will be breaks and it will be consistent. And it will be high quality because that’s what you guys deserve. And that’s ultimately what I want to deliver. So look, that’s been a full ramble about me about where the podcasts been where I’ve been what’s been going on in life.
And I’m just trying to be honest with you. So, you know, a, I’ve got next week’s already pre recorded, it’s all about keyword research. It’s coming up. And so please tune in next week for Episode 127. But in the meantime, you know, if you want to talk about any of the issues that I’ve raised in this episode, head on over to our group at Pete everitt.com forward slash group, or just go to Facebook and search for retainer fam, and you’ll find us and, you know, drop a comment about how you’ve been what have you been struggling with? What could I help you with to move forward? Are you in a good place right now or are not so good place right now? And if it’s the former, then we want to celebrate with you and if it’s the latter, well, how can we help you? Um, so yeah, it’s the group really is designed to be a safe place to discuss those things. So if Yeah, I hope that I’m gonna see you in the group and welcome back. It’s good to be here. It’s good to be talking into my good old trusty microphone again, and I’ll be delighted to see you next week. Show Notes for this episode can be found at peteeveritt.com/126 and I will see you next week.
Main talking points include:
- Look after myself
- Deliver the Content I needed to
- Improve the Systems and Processes at SEOHive
- Keep work flowing through my agency
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