Why Yachting?

The Perfect Development Environment

As soon as you step aboard you start to relax, and Business has so many similarities with Sailing and Yacht Racing

Just as a high performing yacht needs a high performing team, so does a high performing business. Whilst most can complete (get through) the day reasonably well, it is the “fine-tuning” that we all need to consider that makes the big difference at the end of the “race”….where the high performers win!

Having been a mad keen yacht racer as well as a “Yachtmaster Instructor” for about 30 years, I can’t help running the comparison between yacht racing and business. Take the Sydney – Hobart race, there are the winners, and there are many that take part and do really well, and yet again there are those that for what ever reason either don’t make it, or have a poor result.

It dismays me that so many businesses struggle to survive, when they really should be thriving…. simply through lack of good business process management. 

Bringing a Yacht Home from Hobart Just For Fun

(NB Don’t Panic – this wasn’t a PowWow).

An Efficient Leaders Toolkit

In the sport of yacht racing (or even just cruising) we have countless systems and processes to follow that enable the high performers to reach the top and thrive, rather than simply just survive.

From simple checklists to make sure we have all the safety gear on board, and briefing all crew members where it’s stored… through to plotting the race or voyage so we know where we are headed, and building a team with all the right skills and attributes to the best of their ability to help you get there…efficiently!

Imagine the flipside… just wandering down the dock, casting off and setting sail… without having any kind of a plan or system to follow…you might be lucky enough to get there, but the risks are so much higher of you not getting there, and that’s when you are just going out for a leisurely day on the water. If you don’t follow disciplines and processes (and of course the Rules) in a yacht racing competition then you are the MOST UNLIKELY to succeed!

In the Business marketplace, you are in competition and you must ready yourself to stay ahead and to thrive….using the Rules to your advantage!!    

Procedures Are Vital

Let’s consider a small yachting procedure, only a little activity like leaving the dock requires a process or system to follow… we need to check a few things before starting the motor, and then when it’s on do we have cooling water running through it…check… OK, so is everyone in position. Which way is the wind and current going to push the boat when we cast off? Which ropes can be let go first, and which ones do we use to make sure we keep the boat under control? We haven’t left the dock yet and the process goes on…

You see even an average team following a simple system can make it look blissfully easy. Unfortunately I’ve seen too many businesses sailing wherever the wind wants to blow them, often drifting helplessly with no wind in their sails at all.


The Wind In Your Sails

It is pretty easy for me to teach a group of novices how to sail a yacht in only a small amount of time because we know how to break it right down to the critical activities…at the right time.

I can also apply this structure to businesses and organisations to fine tune their sails and their crew work so they can go better…perhaps even win.

But where do you get all your knowledge from….? When getting ready to sail the oceans, you need to understand and read a whole “chart table full of navigation charts and tables” to be prepared for both the known and unknown that you may be faced with on the sea.

In business and in management we need to achieve a wide range of different things that we all also need to learn and understand. However I have also been busy in management and for many, it is simply a case of so much to do and so little time…. so where do you start?

Take a Nautical PowWow and a big step in the right direction.


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