As an entrepreneur, you are bound to face challenges and setbacks that can derail your progress. However, these obstacles can be opportunities to learn, grow, and become a better leader. That’s exactly what I learned from my own experience, when I faced a severe snowboarding accident that changed my life.
I started my own marketing agency with a mission to offer meaningful media content and effective marketing strategies to clients worldwide. My agency, FPW, was born out of my frustration with the traditional marketing agencies that I had worked with in Portland, Oregon. These agencies seemed to be all about pointless meetings, inefficiencies, and a lack of connection with clients. I wanted to do things differently.
However, just as I was getting started, I faced a major setback that put my entire life and business on hold. My snowboarding accident left me with a traumatic brain injury and a severe neck injury. I was unable to work or communicate effectively for months.
But, looking back, I now see that this experience was integral to my success as an entrepreneur. Here are three important lessons that I learned from my snowboarding accident:
Life is Short and Nothing is Promised
The accident made me realize that life is unpredictable and that anything can happen at any moment. Before the accident, I was procrastinating about my career path, trying to figure out what I really wanted to do. But after my accident, I knew that I couldn’t waste any more time. I put my heart and soul into my marketing agency and never looked back.
Leave Your Ego at the Door
One of the biggest lessons I learned from my accident was the importance of leaving your ego at the door. I had seen how other marketing agencies were run by egos, and I wanted to do things differently. I wanted FPW to be a human-centric agency that focused on building personal relationships with clients, rather than just making transactions. This mindset has helped us to stand out from the competition and offer a level of customer service that is unmatched.
Put One Foot in Front of the Other
The most important thing you can do when faced with a setback or challenge is to keep moving forward, step by step. This is what I did during my recovery from my accident. I didn’t give up and I didn’t let the setback defeat me. Instead, I used it as an opportunity to grow and become a better leader.
Over the past decade, FPW has faced many challenges, including the COVID-19 pandemic. But we have never stopped moving forward. I always encourage my employees to keep pushing through and to see setbacks as opportunities for growth.
My snowboarding accident may have been a setback at the time, but it was also a turning point in my life. It taught me valuable lessons about life, leadership, and resilience that I now use to guide my agency to success. I hope these lessons can inspire other entrepreneurs to overcome their own obstacles and achieve their dreams.