Reading Rough Water
Back on the water, our guide shades her eyes, scanning ahead for quiet eddies, boiling ripples, or smooth v-shaped “tongue” formations flanked by foamy whitewater. Fast water is a map for safe travel if you know how to read the signs. We breathe in the scent of fir as she breaks the river into tiny components, measuring risk and reward. Mentally, she’s running this section of river before the first stroke.
In business, this action is grafting risk/reward in a timeline with stops for emergency interventions or exit strategy. Mentally run through the next day, this week, and through the next quarter. There are excel programs to help you organize.
Getting the raft into position to run the narrow gate, I know my friends eyes are focused on the next calm eddy far downstream with thrashing waves in between.
Water roars, splashing back into the boat as the bow threatens to dip under the water. We toss left and right before the raft races toward a rock face. Just before collision, our captain cartwheels the raft sideways and the boat slides past the obstruction.
You are good at your business and have the skills to handle bumps in momentum. Developing or maintaining those behaviors are your responsibility through continued education, market shows, trade journals and networking with others in your profession.
When you enter dangerous waters, have you practiced every scenario on how to flip back upright? If you’re alone in the water, what position should you be in? Identify every option for survival. It’s not a question of if the boat will turn turtle. When it happens, how you’re going to handle it?
In a smooth sweep, our raft swings 180 degrees, and the momentum bounces my daughter out of the boat.