Gary tells me that when he first moved from the west coast to Northern Saskatchewan, he had to learn a whole new way of driving.
There are no roads, that far North, which means all their supplies have to be flown in by air.
It’s only in the winter that those Northern lakes freeze over to form ice roads, on which transport trucks can drive. So in the winter, the villages in the far North can truck in all their major supplies.
“You learn not to wear seat belts,” he says, “because if the truck breaks through the ice, you have just seconds to get out.
“And you always drive with the driver’s-side door open. If the ice gives way, that open door gives you a few seconds’ head start, and some purchase for your feet, before you hit the water.”
Child of the tropics that I am, I shudder at the thought of living in an environment that feels as foreign and inhospitable to me as the far side of the moon.
And I marvel at the ways in which we humans adapt.
That which offers us safety and protection in lower latitudes — closed truck doors, seat belts — becomes a deadly trap in the North.
And I wonder: Where is my business’s North right now?
Where have conditions changed, so that what was once helpful and evolutionary, now cuts me off from life, growth and freedom?
I see this every day, with clients whose businesses have arrived at a major threshold that they must cross in order to continue to grow.
The strategies and skills they’ve used to arrive at their present success cannot get them to where they want to go next.
A new landscape awaits them.
To drive across that ice-road, they must open the driver’s-side door; unbuckle that seat belt.
Then, take a deep breath, and drive.
How about you? Where is your business’s North, right now?
What qualities will help you make the passage safely, to this new home?