What backpacking taught me about my business – Part 2

Clouds flitted across the sky as we headed up Wheeler Peak on Thursday.  The temperature was in the low 60’s at the trailhead and a nice break from the high 90’s we’d left behind in Dallas.  We all set our pace on the trail huffing in the higher altitude and under the weight of our packs.

The forest quickly enveloped us and we talked less as we focused on hiking, the views, and making it to the top.  I enjoyed the conversations with friends but I also enjoy the quiet.  This was where I began to “hear” the business lessons the hike was teaching.  Here are three more lessons I learned.

Enjoy the moment

  • Heading up the trail my focus would settle on what’s right in front of me, the “work” I was doing
    • The next few steps
    • Controlling my breathing
    • Drinking enough fluids to avoid altitude sickness
  • Focusing on these things is critical but if that’s all I focus on I’m missing out on the beauty that surrounds me and the shared moments with friends
  • It’s the same thing in running our company, focus on the work
    • Assist people with their insurance needs
    • Write new business
    • Provide excellent service to our client family
  • But don’t lose sight of enjoying the moments when
    • A client buys their first home
    • The birth of a baby
    • A person protects their family’s future with a life policy
    • Someone’s properly protected when a car accident happens

Glimpses of the goal

  • Our view for the first couple of miles was mostly trees on either side of the trail
  • As we climbed higher, we’d catch glimpses of our destination
  • Those glimpses motivated us when our feet and legs grew tired – they spurred us on and kept us going toward our goal
  • When I started Wise Insurance Group, I created a picture of what I wanted the company to look like
    • What the perfect day would look like
    • Faces of clients
    • Faces of people working to serve our clients
    • What the website would look like
    • The kind of forum I hoped for with this blog
  • Timelines and action lists help make these dreams reality
  • The glimpses that spur us on toward our goals are an emailed thank you, helping a client renew their insurance, and the referrals our clients send us
  • These glimpses remind us of what we’re working toward when our feet are tired and the air seems thin

When you arrive at the peak set another goal

  • On Friday, Matt, Susan, and I hiked from our campsite toward the summit of Wheeler Peak
  • Susan and I crested the saddle, turned right and headed up the remaining 267 feet to Wheeler Peak’s summit, only to find Matt lounging on the rocks waiting for us.  We’d reached our goal!
  • We celebrated by taking pictures of each other, group shots, and the panorama that was around us before returning to camp
  • It was in the hike back down I began to formulate our next goal – this year’s trip to Colorado
  • I set business goals each year to move us closer to the peak I envisioned when I started Wise Insurance Group
  • I know when that goal is attained, we’ll celebrate it as we have all the goals we’ve already attained
  • When the celebration is over, we’ll set the next goal and start climbing toward it!

Have a lesson you want to share with us or a suggestion for our Colorado hike this year?  Post it in the comments section, Google + or Facebook pages and we’ll share the winning suggestion in a follow up post.

Evie Wise
Evie Wise


Evie Wise
Evie Wise

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