An Agenda That Could Change Your Life?


I am just getting down to work when Andy comes barging into my office carrying a big box that is completely blocking his line of sight.

“Special delivery!” He calls out.

Suddenly, he trips over a pile of files sitting on the floor beside my desk and he – and the box – come crashing down. “Oomph.”

“Ah Andy are you okay?!” I jump out of my chair and scramble to his side to help him up, sidestepping my ‘to be shredded’ pile along with the spilled notebooks from Andy’s box on my way.

“I’m fine.” He sits up slowly, a distraught expression on his face.

His attention turns to the state of my office, and I immediately sense the judgments he’s making.

“I’m uh…re-organizing. September is a fresh start!” I explain.

Andy doesn’t look convinced. He pulls one of the notebooks that came from his large box, and opens it up. I quickly realize it isn’t a notebook, but a planner.

agenda-planner

Andy grabs a pen from my desk drawer and scribbles something in the margin next to the month of September. Then he hands it over to me.

I look down and read Andy’s neat handwriting: “September is a fresh start!”

“Now, you can remember this moment, and use it to set your goals moving forward,” Andy says with a smile.

“But I don’t need a planner, I keep everything organized on my iPhone,” I reply.

“And how often do you look back at your digital notes, months later, to assess what you’ve accomplished?” He asks. “I use my paper agenda to track my goals – both professionally and personally. It really helps me stay on track.”

Where did this Andy come from? I think to myself. Mr. Goal Chaser.

“Nothing beats a handwritten collection of your thoughts,” he says. “All the great ones did it – Charles Darwin, Thomas Jefferson, Beatrix Potter.”

I flip through the planner, noticing the weekly and monthly page spreads, with plenty of room for notes. Maybe this is just what I need. “Thanks Andy, great idea.”

“Not to mention, I figure this way, when I become famous, I can sell my planner on eBay for the big bucks!” He jokes.

We sit on my office floor, laughing loudly. “Who knows, Andy? You’re so full of surprises, it just might happen!”

Back-to-School Trends to Watch For


Every year, we see the back-to-school ads and promotions start a little earlier, as retailers race to beat out the competition. It’s the second-largest spending season of the year for retailers, and the pressure is on to bring in the most customers and, of course, the dollar signs.

This Global News article summarizes some key trends in Canadian back-to-school shopping this year. Here are some highlights worth noting:

  • 79% of Canadians will shop for back-to-school online with Albertan’s spending the most at $201 online
  • Two thirds of Canadians plan to start their back-to-school shopping in August (right now!)
  • The average Canadian will spend $325 in stores

Back-to-school-Green-chalkboard

You Can Never Have Too Many Pens


I’m sitting in the boardroom at our monthly staff meeting, listening to Aditi go over our reports, when my pen suddenly runs dry.

I search frantically through my purse for a backup, trying to memorize the numbers Aditi rhymes off so I can be sure to jot them down for review.

Brigid, who is sitting in the chair across from me, slides a pen across the boardroom table and smiles warmly. I mouth the words “thank you,” and start scribbling away to catch up.

But I can’t help becoming distracted by the pen’s smooth, soft grip and archival quality. It glides across my notepad, leaving a smudge-free line of black ink behind.

woman-writing

Aditi’s voice trails off and everyone starts to gather up their things and head for the door. I follow closely behind Brigid, handing her pen back to her.

“Keep it,” Brigid says. “I just got a pack of 12 from the Office Plus e-flyer.”

“Thanks!” I respond. “I’m going to have to get some for myself.”

“It’s the Jimnie Gel Rollerball Pen,” Brigid tells me, pulling the flyer up on her tablet as we walk back to our offices. “You save when you buy a pack of 12.”

I glance over her shoulder as she flips through the pages, stopping her as she scrolls past images of notepads. “I’m running low on these too,” I tell her.

“I like the Recycled Perforated Pads myself,” Brigid says. “High quality legal rule on one side and blank on the other – and made with 100% recycled paper.”

“Sounds perfect!”

“I’ll email you the flyer,” she says over her shoulder as we reach my office door and she continues down the hallway.

I sit down at my desk and carefully place Brigid’s pen in my penholder. Minutes later, I hear the familiar ding coming from my laptop and Brigid’s name pops up in my inbox.

I waste no time finding the pens and pads and sending in my order. Who knew you could get so excited about note taking? I decide to purchase two boxes of 12 – just in case someone asks to “borrow” a pen at the next board meeting. It doesn’t hurt to have a backup. Plus, you can never have too many pens.