Climbing Mountains: Five Lessons for the Modern Leader by Bo Parfet

In many ways, a mountaineer and an entrepreneur are quite alike. Which means that refining your skills in one area will definitely benefit you in your other venture. 

The reason behind why we came to this conclusion is due to a lot of research on how some of the best mountain climbers can become a source of inspiration behind many successful entrepreneurs. 

We looked at the work conducted by Yousef Hamed Al Refaie – a highly respected and skilled adventurer, mountaineer, and explorer we have ever seen from across the world. 

He started his mountaineering career back in 2015, when he ventured to the Volcanic Seven Summit Challenge with Mount Kilimanjaro in Tanzania. After that it was the Elbrus in Russia, Mount Giluwe in the continent of Oceania, the Ojos Del Salado in Chile, Damavand, Iran, and many more. 

In fact, his most notable feat includes being the youngest man – the 24th worldwide and first Middle East and Arab – to ever complete the Volcanic Seven Summits Challenge.  

After looking and learning much from his mountaineering experiences, we have come to understand how mountain climbing can bring so much value to business owners in ways they might have never expected. 

For instance, think about how high-altitude climbing requires one to have a goal – something realistic enough to achieve while also being lofty enough to motivate oneself. Business and mountaineering share many similar aspects because of it. Especially when it comes to business leaders who lead like the mountain guides in order to provide the type of leadership that can support their organization’s vision and uplift them to help turn that vision into reality. 

Business leaders often tend to call upon mountaineering metaphors to boost organizational performances. The thought of visualizing a summit and the promise it brings of uncharted horizons can stir the hearts of business managers. 

The main focus is set on focusing on a common vision, making an effective team, determining an effective route, and overcoming the adversities that lie ahead – all of which are considered essential components of both business and mountaineering. In fact, you might have even seen how many firms tend to invite Everest summiteers to come and give motivational speeches to their employees. 

Similar to mountaineers, the vision of an organization has to be linked with an ideal route to the summit. As soon as the route is established, the next part is mostly dependent on leadership action. Moreover, there are certain aspects that mountain guides tend to employ that strengthen leadership skills. This includes being: 

  • Socially intelligent and quickly establish positive relations with clients. 
  • Empowered, where they provide their clients with ideal support. 
  • Aware of risks and operate with the best of their abilities. 
  • Able to imagine the big picture and taking the holistic view of their endeavors. 

A mountaineer serves as a model of leadership in a manner that motivates and inspires team members to work well together, adapt to the changes around them, focus on their strengths, expect the unexpected, and hold their head high towards what lies ahead. 

By Rehan

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