Braksick got more than a sailing lesson that day. She realized that business is a bit like sailing, that sometimes getting where you want to go means taking a seemingly opposite course for a time. In her case, taking CLG forward meant taking a few steps backward first to figure out where the company was and what was the best way to take it forward.
"I now believe in business there is no straight line," Braksick told me.
I wanted to be a writer for most of my life, but never really considered pursuing it as a career until I was in my 30s. Not until I put all of the mental obstacles out of my mind did I begin to make progress toward that goal.
When I finally got an opportunity to pursue the work I'd always aspired to do, it meant taking a 25 percent cut in pay. Some people looked at me like I was from Mars when I said I was quitting the job I'd worked for 23 years to become a writer. I was so confident that it was the right thing to do that no one could have talked me out of it.
I worked two jobs for a while to make up some of the difference in pay, and eventually matched, then surpassed what I had been making at my previous job. I've never looked back or regretted taking the turn I did, even during the occasional times when things weren't going all that well.
I wanted to go right, but I realized that I needed to turn left for a while to reach my objective.
That taught me some valuable lessons. Ironically, I'm a lot more goal-oriented these days, but a lot less reluctant to take a detour when it looks like it might be a better, if less direct way to get where I want to go.
Knowing where you want to go is critical, but it's just as important to know that it doesn't always mean going straight ahead.