I'm headed out on Monday and attempting to take off two weeks from work (I'm sure one thing or another will at least partially pull me back along the way). But thanks to Sheena's editorial help and a few extra pots of coffee this week, we've manage to cue up over two weeks of content for the site, some of it potentially controversial in topic and tone (as if you've come to expect anything less). We'll stick with the existing program schedule throughout this time period, but during the weeks of August 23rd and 30th, we will also be bringing back our "best of" series for one of the posts during each day. We'll see what Sheena manages to dredge up from the some 10,000 words per week so far this year that have come to define the publication schedule of the site. Sometimes it's too much for even me to keep up with, which is precisely why we're working on new ways to help readers visually navigate and identify the topics and authors they're most interested in reading, starting with the new "eyes" you've seen this week.
Aside from providing input into site updates and tweaks, during my time off, I'm planning on recharging my editorial batteries. This fall is going to mark a new phase of Spend Matters, including the launch of an entirely new regional site (along with a new regional editor) as well as continued integration and new offerings from Spend Matters and MetalMiner. We're also relaunching a new social networking site built around peer-to-peer category sourcing that I've been co-developing with a CPO and a new partner. I'll also be traveling quite a bit to different events in September, including attending Oracle OpenWorld (San Francisco), Emptoris Empower (Boston), SSON (Chicago) and Procurement Leaders (Boston) -- and will probably find an excuse or two to get over to Europe at some point in between. If you're in any of these cities and want to compel me to wake up to fit in marathon training any morning, please let me know. I am happy to talk procurement shop at 5:30 AM on the streets or trails.
On a broader topic, one promise I've made to myself as we enter what looks like will be over a 100% growth phase across the portfolio of affiliated properties in the next 12 months is to spend more time -- not less -- on what I enjoy most: the research and writing which has come to make Spend Matters what it is. I've been fortunate this past month to hand over the CEO responsibilities of Spend Matters and its portfolio and associated holding companies to Lisa Reisman, my wife and better operational half, who has already found ways of freeing me up to spend even more time on the research and editorial side of things that excite me most about building Spend Matters into something even larger. She's even put in things like sales processes and formal screens for new products and business lines, much to the horror of the existing fly-by-the-seat-of-your-pants team.
So stay tuned as we open a new Spend Matters chapter starting in September (and a couple of weeks of some new and insightful content and commentary in the meantime). And if anyone finds themselves in upstate Vermont the week of August 23rd and wants to go out for a long run or mountain biking in the hills and talk procurement, supply chain or trade, let me know -- and please keep the stalling economy out of the discussion, as I know I'll be returning to the real world to observe a period of negative GDP growth. We'll be at Tyler Family place, probably the best family Spend Management R&R money can buy.