All posts filed under: Morning Motivators

How strong is your WHY?

I do these races to better myself, to acquire new skills, life lessons and test my metal in the toughest of elements. In addition, the shared sense of purpose you encounter with like-minded individuals create an experience that is hard to replicate.   This year as I wrote on Monday, I entered as a team. I now start these races knowing what it takes to finish and am prepared to handle the majority of obstacles that stand in between me and the finish line.  The team element is a new level of difficulty and risk/reward that increases the learning I bring home. Like mentors before me, I enjoy sharing these experiences and paying forward to those who are interested.   Who are some of the characters you meet and why are they there? Three entrepreneurs who ran together 14 years ago in the eco-challenge and are using this as a forum to bond a relationship as they start a new business venture A former top runner and world-class photographer from Korea.  He was there for the …

Sons of Patagonia

In every race, you experience new highs, new lows and meet unique personalities of impeccable character.  In the coming weeks, I will profile some of those people from all over the globe. Once the race is done, everyone heads back to the host hotel to clean off 7 days of grime, lie down on a real bed and reflect on the adventure. In the evening, the race organization hosts an awards banquet to hand out recognition for the top individuals and teams. To get through these races you need an incredible amount of grit, camaraderie, and belief in yourself. The logistics that go into the week are incredible. Weather systems in Patagonia are highly unpredictable and we had at least two course change during the week.  The race brings volunteers and partners with local workers to make sure everything runs as smooth as possible. Every runner is up between 5-6am preparing for the start of each day.  We need hot water for our breakfast and often corral around the campfires in order to warm up. …

Sacrifice for the team

We are officially done the race and resting in Bariloche! What an incredible adventure! I can’t say enough about what a spectacular week the race organizers put on, the professionalism of the local camp team and the spirit of the volunteers and fellow competitors. When we started the week, what success looked like to us as a team was: 1) Start as a team, finish as a team 2) Finish in the top 3/5 teams 3) Finish in the top 1/3 of all competitors 4) Have many laughs along the way and enjoy the journey We delivered on all those goals and made memories to last a lifetime. We almost blew up as a team on day 2 and found a way to hold it together to finish out strong! We ran through hot climates, alpine forest, the Andes mountain range, national parks, private lands, saw the most incredible stars and finished at one of the most recognizable extinct volcanoes in the world, Tronador.  Spanish for Thunder, Tronador is located on the border between Argentina …

How to prepare for your biggest talk ever

When I was a sales rep, I used to get nervous presenting in front of customers or even my own sales team.  Groups or 8-10 were intimidating to me!   I made a decision that good public speaking was a skill I want, no need, to have.   What did I do? I took a one-day presentation class offered by my company I took a 13 weeknight class offered by our University in Toronto I put my hand up for any chance to present in front of our company I found colleagues inside and outside the company that also wanted to learn a great skill and asked them to join. It kept us both accountable and helped have an internal advocate when I needed it. I found my own secret sauce. I combined my skill at work (sales) with my passion in life (running) to make a unique presentation that people would want to hear. I made some big improvements and some crash and burns, along the way! I slowly moved from being more comfortable in front …

Characteristics of a 3 time championship team

I was talking to a mentor of mine last week who is the CEO of a local company in Toronto and a top-notch Athlete. He is actually not (self-described) a very good runner, however, he makes up for it in pure athletic ability, strategy, and competitiveness.   I asked him advice for the upcoming race I am doing in Patagonia in November as I will be running for the first time as a team.   He said “you need to discuss your game plan ahead of time. Start with the objective for the team.  Is it to win or compete?  Think about the obstacles you are going to encounter and the spots where emotion will come into play and have a game plan for how to handle those conversations.   If someone is slow, gets sick or injured, know how they react to distress and discuss the best way to handle them.  Two, have your plan B, C, D already talked through when level-headed.  Emotions can make things difficult.   Understand how each person is …

Top Leaders Share Four Ways to Approach a Challenge

  I had dinner with two smart leaders last night. They both work for fast-growing companies and are plugged into other smart companies.  We had some great conversation on challenges across all components of a business.   The consensus:   The best companies go through growing pains and it’s often messy. Clarity is on the other side. Obstacles are just a short-term impediment to be looked upon fondly once overcome.  Focus on your strengths, not your weaknesses. Moving your weakness from a 3 to a 5 isn’t worth missing taking your strength from a 7 to 9.  Take time out of the business consistently to learn from others. Courses, conferences, taking in knowledge.   Thanks for recharging my batteries.   Colin  

4 Intentions for Growth

I faced some headwind this weekend. Whether the number of training hours catching up with me or a just an off weekend, I hit some obstacles. Sunday Example. 5-hour hike/run Challenges: – Body/mind tired from Saturday 4 hour training – Backpack weight was too heavy to start and couldn’t dump my water weight – My directions were not detailed enough. I was trying to mimic a North Face race course These type of things happen in every race. So instead of stewing on it with negative statements, I asked myself a better question. What’s the upside? – Adaptability is key to finishing these races – Better to make mistakes in practice so you can fix for race day – I’ve got lost on course before. Patience and calm in the storm help you dig out. It was an opportunity to reset and reframe. Now if I step back and look at some overall intentions of a tough training weekend they were: To get set hours and mileage in To problem solve, overcome obstacles and mentally …

Push to your limit, then keep going.

Push to your limit, then keep going. The anxiety you are feeling is growth. I was fighting with the treadmill with this morning. An hour straight up a hill. Forced speed and incline will push my heart rate over 160-180. Then I ease off until it comes back to 150 beats per minute. Tough stuff. When I felt like quitting, I pushed a little further. 1 min, 2 min, 5 min. In the desert, it may be an hour or more. What you do in practice come out in life. When you hit that resistance today, keep going. Colin

5 Ways to Handle A Daunting Road Ahead

Many of us climb the hill every week.   Tough conversations with employees, bosses, customers, and peers.   Tight deadlines on projects, deals, and customer events.   Not to mention personal and family challenges.  How are some of the best leaders seemingly immune to stress?   Most of them are not. They have more practice and a template to handle it!   What do top leaders share with me?   1. Expect it and have a plan.  Visualize your way over and through.   2. Know when to recharge and restore so you can hit it hard the next day.   3. Look back and review what was once hard and how you overcame it?  The past provides clues.   4. Like military men and women making their bunk first thing every morning, get your day started off with even the smallest success.   5. Start the day well and end the day well. End the day with a win to ride the momentum into the next morning. This can be as simple as asking ‘what you are …

Cross-Functional Approach

In talking to both top sales reps, sales, and enablement leaders the last couple weeks, working across the matrix (all pillars in an organization) in one form or another has come up. Who are the people that you need to partner with to get things done? Partnership is one of our top values in enablement. The world is too complex to get most things done alone. Many early in tenure in role try and muscle the sale or program through, instead of quarterbacking the play. I learned the hard way both in sales and in enablement/sales training. It takes a village to onboard a sales rep, to sell a big deal, to accomplish any big hairy audacious goal. Question: Does your calendar align to all those “partners” who will help you get the ball across the line? Your calendar speaks volumes about how you manage your relationships and your time. Have a great hump day! Colin