Speakers provide inspiration at Magnetsigns event
Camrose residents and Magnetsigns franchisees received a huge dose of inspiration from Colin and Julie Angus, Ray Titus and Jennifer Botterill in a Magnetsign presentation entitled The Winning Secret: Building a Vision For Success at the Augustana Faith and Life Centre chapel June 9.
Colin and Julie Angus recounted their 2004 to 2006 adventures that resulted in Colin become the first person to circumnavigate the globe by human power and the two being named National Geographic Adventurers of the Year in 2007.
The trip started with Julie and Colin cycling from Vancouver to Alaska.
"The second day of cycling in BC was one of the hardest of the entire trip," said Colin.
After arriving at Alaska, Julie returned home to plan the rest of the expedition while Colin crossed the Bering Sea in a rowboat with friend Todd Harvey.
"It was hard to make big progress against the big waves," said Colin. "We spent one month crossing the Sea."
Entering Siberia, Colin and Harvey were faced with minus 55 degree temperatures and at one time became separated by a whiteout.
"We traversed 4,000 km in the heart of winter," said Colin. "We learned the importance of being prepared, having enough to eat and drink and scheduling time for communication."
Colin and Julie reunited in Moscow and proceeded to cycle 5,472 km across Europe to Lisbon, Portugal, where they boarded a rowboat for a crossing of the Atlantic in a seven metre, technologically-equipped row boat they had found on the Internet.
"We rowed for 18 to 20 hours a day," said Julie. "We rowed 10,000 km over a span of 146 days."
The couple stressed the importance of prioritizing and dealing with the biggest risks first. At first they were so caught up in their problems with the boat's malfunctioning GPS that they narrowly avoided being run over by a freighter.
"After that we kept diligent watch," said Colin.
While confident in their own abilities, Colin and Julie ran into their share of distractors, including the president of the Ocean Rowing Society, who expressed doubts as to whether or not they knew what they were doing.
"He didn't know the preparation we had put in so he was in no position to judge," said Julie. "In the end you are the only one who can make decisions as to whether you can do something or not."
The trip concluded with a 8,304 km bike ride from Costa Rica to their Vancouver home.
Colin and Julie stressed the importance of taking baby steps every day.
"It is hard to grasp the enormity of doing something like this," said Colin, "but if you focus on the immediate the little things will add up."
Ray Titus, founder and CEO of the United Franchise Group, a global franchising group with 1,400 franchises in 53 countries, stressed the importance of planning for success and envisioning where you eventually want to be.
"Whatever you want to do can be accomplished if you write it down," he said. "Dreams are goals that were never written down."
Titus said it is incumbent upon owners of companies to communicate their vision and plan to employers to make sure everyone knows what they have to do in order for the company to achieve.
"You need to take pride in what you want to be and where you want to go as a business."
Jennifer Botterill told her story about a 14-year career in which she won three Olympic gold medals as a member of the national women's hockey team.
Botterill began dreaming about becoming an Olympic after having a conversation with her dad, a sports psychologist, who encouraged her to set a goal and strive towards it.
"It was after talking to him that I began to think about the possibility of making the 1998 team," she said. "I didn't want to look back afterwards and wish I had done something to make the team."
Botterill said it is important to focus on those things that we can control.
"We can control our performance by striving to be our personal best every day."
Botterill said the 2002 season was one of many challenges for the Canadian team, which lost to the rival Americans eight times in a row before the Salt Lake City Olympics.
"We realized going into the Olympics that we had not brought out best performance but we believed that we could be successful," she said. "We felt that we were prepared. Every person on the team was there to help the other person. We had the belief that we can't always choose the role we play but we can choose how we play it."
Botterill said the Vancouver Olympics in 2010 far exceeded her expectations in terms of the energy and support they received from Canadians.
"The Olympics were not just about the athletes performing well, they were about everyone from coast to coast who embraced the Olympic spirit."
Botterill is currently an International Olympic Committee athlete ambassador, a hockey analyst, and an advocate for a number of important charities and healthy lifestyle initiatives.
Camrose is the headquarters for Magnetsigns, which has more than 130 franchises across Canada and the United States.