Looking Back At 2023

Gordon Fong
Co-hosted by Datacenta
4 min readMay 8, 2024

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Our ongoing work sometimes deserves the moments to pause and reflect.

Let me share with you some of the efforts from my side that have looked to make that dent in the wider area and the communities I represent this year.

1) We can’t just talk, we have to act

During the summer months and into autumn I drove awareness to heart monitoring.

Consider the airplane advice of putting your mask on first before helping others. I recognise it myself. We have ultimate responsibility for the team. We take one for the team. We die for the team. Well no, we literally shouldn’t die for the team.

As peers amongst other business owners, we know what we take on, but we know we are the last on the list, so let’s remind each other to check on ourselves before it’s too late.

I found this an interesting read although I don’t want to read too much on the subject, to be honest, but somehow, we need to spread awareness. It is reality.

2) Collective action

At YATM Creator Day 23 I took to the stage and everyone rallied behind #InPoole

Gordon on stage at the Lighthouse Theatre in Poole.

It started as one idea, but it doubled in purpose.

With GDPR and data protection, the days of handing our delegate lists freely are gone, so how do we find out who else is attending that might be of interest to us given the fact that we will not be speaking to everyone. It’s likely that someone else there could be a potential client, potential supplier, or even someone in life that you get on with.

I live in the BCP Council area, and the B of Bournemouth tends to get all the glory whilst Poole and Christchurch follow in the shadow.

I’ve talked previously about celebrating the places we are in, and the Creator Day event was held at the Lighthouse Theatre, “in Poole”. Instead of pushing a hashtag for the event, which would have been the easiest and normal option I decided to use #inPoole to bring a spotlight to the place we were in.

The collective action was to ask everyone to take a selfie, a video, alone or with other people and a brief note on who you are and what you do. A clear example was given on screen and many dutifully completed that task.

What it also enabled was the fact that people could search on that hashtag, find out who else was there on the day, and decide to follow each other.

Also, Poole got a boost on social media and it’s great that local businesses are still using that hashtag even if they knew nothing about the You Are The Media event.

That piece of collective action certainly spread sight of the event, participants and the local area to our mutual contacts, who must have thought wow, that looks fun.

3) We have to lead by example and step up

During 2023 I became a podcast guest, created Battlelab vids and developed involvement with Bournemouth & Poole College.

I challenged myself further in 2023 to talk more about the area, to talk more about work and to step forward to support others.

I’ve usurped the term shotgun wedding to create Shotgun Extrovert, as in you WILL get out there, speak to people and be seen. Say ‘yes’ before you have time to get scared and say no.

I opened up about myself on The Evolve to Succeed Podcast by Warren Munson.

I got in front of the camera a lot more to do talking pieces on my Park Life videos about what’s happening at work and around the Defence BattleLab and shine a spotlight onto other organisations in a bid to bring more activity and investment to the area. I even got my local MP, who was the Chair of the Defence Select Committee before he visited, to come and see the bigger picture.

Tobias Ellwood MP and Gordon Fong at the BattleLab

I’ve talked and posted about the next generation; and how important it is for us to support them as they will be the generation to look after me when I grow old and maybe unable to look after myself. Being co-opted onto a Bournemouth and Poole College committee is a first step into being more than just words.

Summing Up 2023

The impact we can all make is not about the constant pursuit of reaching for that grand moment in time.

It’s the small steps we make, every month that help to contribute to bigger ideas and plans coming to fruition with the groundwork we do.

Gordon and Matt from Telesoft.

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Gordon Fong
Co-hosted by Datacenta

Lives in Southbourne, business locations in Bournemouth and Winfrith. Web, hosting and consultancy.