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By Hammad Zaidi | July 17, 2012

Hi everyone. I hope your week was as adventurous as mine. After attending my first Major League Baseball All-Star Game in Kansas City last Tuesday, my flight home was canceled. Rather than complain about being stuck in K.C. overnight, I opted to have dinner with three people from my canceled flight. Over the years, I’ve met many good friends on airplanes and in airports, so having dinner with strangers is nothing new. In fact, not doing so would be out of character for me.

My new found trio of eclectic friends included, Melissa, a freight sales person for “really big ships,” her sister Shannon, a budding chef, and Robert, a former comic turned JD/MBA who’s a medical finance expert. After having American Airlines put us up in lap of luxury at hotels like the Best Western and Days Inn at the airport, the four of us trekked back to town and had dinner at a posh pizza joint on Kansas City’s upscale Country Club Plaza. For those of you unfamiliar with Kansas City, “The Plaza” was the world’s first shopping center designed to accommodate shoppers arriving by car.

As Melissa, Shannon, Robert and myself listened to Jason, a hip, incredibly high-pitched lounge singer belt out an impressive version of “Message in a Bottle,” I couldn’t help but to wonder how wonderfully odd that very moment was. More importantly, I started to reflect on the first six months of this year. 2012 has rocked for me, but it’s rocked to a different tune than I had expected. So, as soon as I finally got back to L.A., I looked at my January 3, article titled “My Bionic 2012” and started examining what I set out to accomplish this year, versus what actually happened. My road has had its share of left turns, but unlike previous years, these “left turns” turned out to far better choices than turning right or going straight.

So, today I encourage you to check in on the career goals you set for yourself for 2012. You’ll either be further toward or further away from your goals, but either way, you’ll be able to reconfigure your plan of attack if needed. As a way of helping you jump-start your career self-review, I’ll list the goals I set at the beginning of this year, versus where I am today.

The Set Up:
The bold headlines below are from my January 3, 2012 article.

The words under the bold headlines explain where I am today.

The Rules:
No bullshit. As always, I’ll be open an honest with you, just like you should be open and honest with yourself when you conduct your own self-review.

Okay, it’s time to buckle up and get the radio to your favorite station, because this ride is about to roll (who am I kidding? Nobody listens to radio anymore…Just plug in your IPhone).

Development Production and Distribution of Reality TV
I’m developing and producing a lot more than expected. I’m deeply involved in writing and producing five sports-related television projects, including a documentary that is currently in production. Thankfully, all five projects are in various stages, so I’m not slammed with having all of them go forward at once (although I wouldn’t complain if that happened).

Licensing TV Formats For Production In Other Countries
I decided to back off of this project for a while, because of the time commitment needed to do it right. Simply put, if a real opportunity arose to do a deal or two in this arena, I’d jump on a plane and make it happen. However, it’s not a smart use of my time to fly all over the world chasing international TV format deals, unless I was sure that I could close the deal quickly. I’d rather stay in Los Angeles and spend quality time with my one year-old twin daughters.

Produce An Internet Based TV Series
I have not done this yet, but I had a recent meeting that may get me to dive in. My hesitation is that I need a sponsor willing to underwrite the production cost before I’ll commit large amounts of time. Internet based projects just don’t generate enough money for me to take my time away from other areas of distribution that do generate healthy sales.

Finish Shooting and Editing My Feature Film
I’ve been shooting and editing steadily in 2012, so a tremendous amount of progress has been made. With any luck, I will have my film finished by the end of this year. Now, I’ve said that in years past, but this year I’m serious about getting my 12-year film journey off my “career plate.”

Finishing My Children’s Book And Seeking Publishing
Honestly, I’m in the same damn place with my Children’s book as I was in the beginning of this year. That’s shameful, I know. The funny thing is, my Children’s book is my single favorite project, and probably the one with the most mainstream breakout potential. Then again, I could be dead wrong, and my book could merely be something I read to my daughters. Either way, I’ve got to finish it soon!

Get A Book Deal Based On This Going Bionic Column
While book publishers have expressed interest, I have yet to get with my agent and really explore the possibilities. However, since today is my 114th article, maybe I should. Then, (cue my favorite band The Beatles, I’d be a “paperback writer”).

Unexpected New Developments This Year
In addition to what’s listed above, I’ve also found myself working on a few new international distribution opportunities:

1)  Getting involved with major studio releases in South Asia.

2)  Getting involved in building multiplexes in South Asia.

3)  Helping expand a major offshore Ad Agency to the USA.

The one thing I’ll say about managing my changes in 2012 thus far, is that keeping all of the doors around me open is the smartest thing I could have ever done. Remember, possibilities are only possibilities if you allow them to be possibilities. So, here’s to you diving into your own 2012 half-year review. Should any of you have questions, feel free to contact me. I’d be happy to help you in any way that I can.

Thank you again for lending me your eyes, and I look forward to borrowing them again next Tuesday.

I can be followed on Twitter @Lonelyseal.

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  1. shamim Zaidi says:

    Great job writing on this subject.

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