From our founder, Mike Huckleberry:
People in most industries experience increased stress and pressure at certain times of year. For the tourist and merchandising industries, it's the holidays. For the automobile industry, it's spring leading into summer. For ski resorts, it's the mad rush of opening weekend. For the Federal government, the busy time comes during August and September, which signals the end of the fiscal year and the need to burn cash.
What happens during these times is no surprise, and all too common. Longer hours equal less time for family, exercise, preparing healthy food, and attending to longer-term objectives. The tyranny of the urgent begs for attention. We forget about some of the most important work in the rush and fury to generate revenue.
At Qocreate, our whole purpose is to remove stress from the proposal and business development life cycles. For our Federal government work, this means that September is a perfect time to test our model. So, in that spirit, I took a four-day, three-night trip into the Emigrant Wilderness at the height of proposal time. This is what I learned.
Preparation and the right equipment are critical for success.
Before doing anything strenuous, preparation and the right equipment are key. You will never waste hours organizing, simplifying, and checking to make sure you have the minimal effective resources to get the work done.
Direction, knowledge, and stamina are key for survival.
We trekked 30 miles over the course of four days. With a GPS and a compass, we worked our way over granite, through trees, and across rivers, much of the time on untrodden ground. Fortunately for me, my friends knew how to orient themselves in this vast space. I learned from them. Without their knowledge, I would have quickly gotten lost, potentially for good. It took stamina to keep up with them, and I'm glad I had it.
Exploration, diversity, and hard work are refreshing.
There are few better ways for me to reset and gain a new perspective than venturing into diverse and unknown territory. In the Emigrant Wilderness, landscape, scenery, and weather change constantly. The diversity enriches and enlivens. This helps, because the rise and fall of the hills and mountains can be torturous on the body. A great lesson here is to keep moving, step by step. Hard work exercises the mind and body in a way I rarely acknowledge.
Celebration is the result of hard work, and is a state of mind. Relax.
Finally, celebration is natural and critical, regardless of winning or losing. I often hear that it's the journey, not the destination, that matters. Or, conversely, that the only thing that matters is the bottom line, regardless of how you get there. My take on it? Both matter - the journey and the destination.
For those of us at Qocreate, the destination is celebrating the fact that we have given our all for winning work. If we lose, and we rarely do, it's okay. We know we have put in the preparation, set out with a clear direction, and done the hard work, and we plan to enjoy the place we end up - even if that's a place where we spend time reflecting on lessons learned.
So here's to everyone who knows what it's like to work in the midst of crunch time in your industry. For those who work in proposals, we're here to help remove the stress, so that you can head out into the wilderness, spend time with family, make a good meal, or just relax. Cheers!
Want to lessen your stress? Schedule a call at your convenience with Mike today - he's back in the office and ready to help!