Turbo Leadership Systems

Phone: (503) 625-1867 Fax: (503) 625-2699 email: admin@turbols.com
Issue 81 To our clients and friends May 9, 2006
Smooth Sailing
Larry W. Dennis, Sr.
Turbo Leadership

Preplanning ensures success in all endeavors.

Judith, project engineer for a southern Oregon paving contractor, told Session 38 of the Leadership Development Lab™ (LDL):

"The first significant proactive risk I took was when I was 14½ Years old. My parents, my 11 year old sister, our cat Twinkle Toes and I were living aboard a sailboat that had been built in the 1940's. That summer, my father decided we should sail to Hawaii. The risk I took was to go along.

"After provisioning the boat our friends from the yacht club bid us farewell. We brought along a 16 year old boy from the club and buddy sailed with another boat. Now keep in mind - when I was 14 there weren't GPS's or satellite phones, and we didn't have radar. There aren't any grocery stores or gas stations along the way and you certainly can't drink the water.

"My watch was from midnight to 3 a.m. That meant I was the only one awake, keeping a look out for ships, an eye on the compass, and a hand on the tiller. You have no idea how big the sky is and how many millions of brilliant stars there are when you're thousands of miles from land with no lights. I learned what responsibility means real fast.

"My dad taught me how to navigate

and I enjoyed being included in plotting our course. My dad was doing what all responsible leaders do; he was preparing his replacement in case something happened to him. He would pull stunts like slipping off the stern to make us do 'man-over-board' drills. This was a real drill for skill, real training.

"It took us 17 days to reach Hilo, Hawaii and 30 days to return home. We encountered four gales on the way back and were taking on more water than we could pump out. We met up with the other boat and got an extra pump and literally pumped our way home.

"The trip to Hawaii was the greatest gift I received from my father. I would not be the person I am today if I hadn't taken that risk.

"The lessons I learned this experience is the importance of proper planning and that taking calculated risks is the path to self-reliance.

"The action I call you to take is to take the proactive risks your team requires of you to be successful. The benefit you will gain is a greater sense of self trust. Your life will be smooth sailing."