So here we are, at the end of 2021.
It’s a bit of an understatement to say that at the start of the year, we had a very different vision for how the year would progress.
We were looking forward to getting back into the office; in fact, we had multiple people join ezispeak in 2020 who didn’t meet the rest of the team until the end of year Christmas party.
We were poised to take ezispeak to the next level through exponential growth.
We were ready to embrace a post-COVID world, and let things go back to normal.
And then 2021 happened.
The delta strain of COVID saw our hometown of Melbourne suffer through multiple lockdowns – a short 3-day lockdown in February was just the start; we followed that with a 2-week lockdown in May/June, and a similar length lockdown in July. But it was the last lockdown that was the one that really hurt – from August to late October, making Melbourne the most locked down city in the world.
Prolonged border closures and continued lockdowns hurt the national economy. It rocked consumer confidence. And in turn, it impacted all industries, including ours – given ezispeak operates in the retail consumer market.
We also had other events which impacted the business – which tested our resolve.
In August 2021, the ezispeak business, which I founded, was the target of a hostile takeover by a shareholder. This move forced the remaining shareholders and senior management to move quickly. Through this process, we became technology vendor agnostic; therefore, in many respects, it was a welcomed push towards true independence. In 2022, it will be our turn to speak, to set the market straight because there’s a lot more to say about this and when the time is right, I will.
What I can talk about is the pride I have for the ezispeak team and the people around me who supported me during this difficult period – through what may be the toughest period of ezispeak’s existence, the team rallied together to get the job done.
Every single person at ezispeak worked to ensure that our clients still had the access to language support that they needed, and subsequently we assisted in giving often vulnerable people across Australia and New Zealand a voice and allowing them to be heard.
It is true – it isn’t about how hard you get hit. It’s about how hard you can get hit and keep moving forward.
Make no mistake, this has been a tough time for us, yet the ezispeak team faced it head on, and often made the seemingly impossible a reality.
It’s their passion, drive and focus that galvanized my own resolve, and gave me the lift I needed throughout the year.
I genuinely can’t thank them enough.
So now we look ahead to 2022. It is unlikely that we’ll see new strains of COVID create the need for further lockdowns, thanks to our ever-increased vaccination rate. But if it happens, we’ll be ready, and we’ll be prepared.
And for ezispeak, it’s an opportunity to make up for lost time. In 2022, we show the world that we do what we do better than anyone else.
Bring it on.