The GO! Network team look back on the year, reflecting on their biggest achievements, key learnings and hopes for 2022.

As 2021 draws to an end and with 2022 just around the corner, we're taking time to look back on the last twelve months - to celebrate our biggest personal achievements, reflect on our biggest learnings and to look forward to what's in store for the year ahead.

What is one thing that you’ve learned this year?

"The biggest learning this year for me and the marketing team has been that every learning is progress. Given we've started from almost scratch with a marketing strategy this year, it's been about constantly adapting and shifting our approach to make sure we land on something solid that resonates with our community." - Charlotte

"I have learnt that perfection doesn’t exist and ups and downs are natural. The way to overcome any challenge is by having an open and honest team that genuinely supports and cares for each other." - Alicia

"I would say that I re-learned/remembered how much I prefer being around people and how much more interesting you are and better off for those interactions. Both in the office and out of it." - Sam J

"Patience (can you learn that? – I’m running with it anyway). My entire professional career has centred around a sense of urgency and making things happen. This last 12/18 months has taught me a valuable lesson in that you can’t tackle everything at pace and with the expectation of immediate results – some things just won’t conform to that, and key projects often don’t benefit from that mindset. I still have an internal battle with myself on this, but I am finding that by giving myself a window of time (sometimes just 15 minutes between meetings.) I am starting to learn the triggers to switch between the thought processes and communication styles that will add the most value to the challenge we are discussing." - Gareth

"A key takeaway for me this year, and as simple as it sounds, has been to just keep going. It has been tough not being able to meet people in the traditional way and having to build new business relationships over a computer screen, but good things have come from not giving up and focusing on why we’re doing what we’re doing." - Craig

"Holding my patience when there is a technology breakdown, as it is very easy to get frustrated when something goes wrong and there are lots of tasks to do. When I think more deeply about how much things have evolved in the workplace, the various number of tools we readily use to make us more efficient and streamlined, and the volume of work and tasks that platforms are required to support us with completing, it’s pretty astounding and I don’t know how we used to work without them all. To put it into perspective, I read that 2.4 billion emails get sent every second. That's 74 trillion emails every year!" - Amanda

"Key criteria can change. Pre-pandemic, brands were obsessed with agency location and having them close by. Through the like of Teams and Zoom, it’s become obvious that you can be anywhere as long as you can jump on a call. This has opened up so many options in regard to the type of agencies you can work with" - Adam

"A key business learning from 2021 for me personally is to control what you control. The pandemic has shone a very bright light on the need to be agile, not just in business but in life. On countless occasions, things have not played out exactly as I thought they would, and rather than focus on the inevitable frustrations or headaches this causes, I have instead learnt that my energy is best placed in controlling the elements of my day-to-day work that I can positively influence in order to push towards the outcome I desire." - Russell

"Never underestimate just how resilient people can be." - Dom

"This year has really highlighted to me that having a collaborative and positive attitude as a collective team can really influence a business. This is especially apparent at GO!, where clear, efficient communication is crucial and at the core of the business. 

One thing that has become especially apparent this year, is that location is becoming less-and-less crucial for brands when appointing agencies. I’d say this has been heavily influenced by COVID and the introduction of more working from home, which has meant many meetings/appointments that were previously held face-to-face have had to move onto an online platform – but have remained just as effective. This has resulted in brands being happier to search further afield for agencies than just in their local area, due to the increasing acceptance, and necessity, of moving face-to-face meetings online." - Max

"Trust my gut and truly value the service and time we provide to brands." - Darren

"If something doesn’t go to plan, don’t beat yourself up about it. Instead, know that you have tried and use it as a piece of learning. Analyse why it didn’t work out how you thought it would and continue to try different approaches. You’ll get there in the end." - Sam S

What is your greatest achievement this year at GO!?

"My favourite business achievement this year has been working with the SME Partners. Together, we successfully placed nine agencies in four different companies to help them achieve their marketing goals." - Alicia

"For me, seeing our increased marketing efforts turn into new business for GO! has been an incredibly rewarding achievement. I joined the GO! team at an exciting time, after a rebrand and launch of a new website. The hard work of Russell, Charlotte and the team to get to that position meant that I could hit the ground running with a strong brand identity and voice from the moment I started." - Sam S

"Normally, I would say the number of new brands and briefs that I have brought in but what I think has been a more impactful metric, is the number of brands that have returned with the second, third and fourth brief. Showing that our process adds value." - Adam

"I am incredibly proud of the personal accountability and ambition I have seen within the team in a year that has been turbulent for many of them on both a personal and professional level. One of our six core values as a business is “Collective Improvement.” We face every challenge with a positive attitude and with the ambition of progression. I see this value demonstrated by our team each and every day." - Russell

"I think the greatest achievement this year for me would be the launch of our rebrand and notable shift in how our network perceive our brand." - Charlotte

"My favourite business achievement so far this year would have to be winning the GO! Chancellors Award last quarter. It highlighted the appreciation of the work I had been doing from the rest of the team, which is always lovely to hear! It was very rewarding to see the positive comments from the team, both about myself and the other members of GO! who have all been completing great work." - Max

"Helping to grow the GO! Network team via two great hires, Harry and Max, and supporting them with development into what were brand new roles both for them and the company, whilst also supporting the overall growth of GO!" - Amanda

"Development from Q2 to Q3 in personal performance and engagement achieved with hero brands such as Cinch, Vanarama, Ladbrokes, Auto Trader, Goodyear, and Continental." - Darren

"I would say that other than starting a highly successful five-a-side team for GO! which truly brought us all together more as a team, I have been really proud to have worked with and made introductions to some great businesses from startup all the way to global brand/household name." - Sam J

"The amount of repeat business achieved by the brand team – once we prove our value to a brand, they come back time and time again." - Dom

"My favourite business achievement of the year has finally (albeit momentarily) being able to attend industry events again near to the end of the year. The joy of seeing old and new faces, new products and the buzz around a venue has been great." - Craig

"I’d like to think I have played my part in our business smiling a lot…even when times have been tough, and the challenges just seem to be queuing up. By our own choice, we’re a high growth business and the pressures that come with that both individually and collectively are significant. The thing that gives me the greatest sense of pride as I write this though, is the culture that is evolving set by our values. The world has been a pretty mad/scary place in 2021 and if you can create a professional existence which is stable, enjoyable and rewarding then I think that is more important now than ever." - Gareth

What are your hopes for 2022?

"We’re a networking business, so getting to meet people face to face, build relationships and ‘get out there’ will be my hope for 2022. Watching the FMCG market grow and seeing how the Hospitality Industry fights back in 2022 will be something I’ll be doing all I can to support." - Craig

"My hope for 2022 is to further expand the GO! offering in the fashion and beauty markets and add value and my expertise to help brands realise their strategies." - Alicia

"2022 is set to be a significant 12 months for our business, with key developments both internally and externally. My biggest hope is to be able to maintain and improve upon the culture of the business as we grow and diversify and to be able to launch new offerings with the same success we managed with the core business in 2018. A huge increase in global marketing budgets would be nice as well." - Gareth

"It’s cheesy, but good health and success for my family, friends and everyone at GO! From a business perspective, I hope that we can continue to build, improve and adapt, raising the bar again and outdoing what we achieved in 2021." - Dom

"Continued growth, got to a point where I didn’t want the year to end. Not just us but business in general really felt like it was riding a bit of a wave. If that continues into the new year, that would be fantastic for everyone"- Adam

"My enthusiasm and positivity for 2022 is sky high for a number of reasons. Firstly, the lessons the team have learnt and the drive they have shown in the face of a reasonable headwind over the past two years. Secondly, the very clear improvement in market conditions and the desire for the service we offer which we are continuing to experience the rewards of. And finally, the number of upcoming improvements and new additions we will be adding into our model over the next twelve months that will bring even greater value to the brands and agencies in The GO! Network. Watch this space." - Russell

"Get married in July (finally) and really push on and drive personal and collective performance at GO!" - Darren

"We have some exciting plans in terms of marketing for 2022, so keep an eye out for some announcements early in the new year. I’m excited to build upon our agency and partner events programme, and continue to expand the ways we can amplify our agencies’ work via GO!." - Sam S

"For 2022, I'm excited for us to launch our refined marketing strategy in earnest and build on all these foundations we've laid in 2021." - Charlotte

"Firstly, more opportunities for face to meetings and grab a drink with our members in the minibar! Second, to continue to support the growth of the team and members matching briefs to projects and support some agencies with getting into some areas they are hoping to crack. And finally, travel (if we’re permitted of course) and to learn a language and something creative outside of work." - Amanda

"Building on the foundations of this year and everything I’ve learnt. Looking forward to (hopefully) continuing the recent trend of being busy with events and face to face meetings." - Sam J

"In 2022, I hope to continue my learning and development at GO!, continue networking with agencies and furthering my knowledge of their specialisms, previous work, and USPs. I also hope for COVID to vanish!" - Max

From everyone here at GO!, thank you for your continued support throughout the year. We've got some exciting new things in the pipeline for 2022, so make sure to follow/like all of our socials and sign up to our newsletter to keep up-to-date with the latest news and events.

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