What you do outside of the river doesn’t matter a bit. CEO? Who cares. Once we are on the river it’s just some people out having fun. Barriers are blown away. It’s like when Luke Skywalker heads down the trench sending a torpedo down the exhaust port. Goodbye Death Star.
One of the things I like about being a fly fishing guide is the relationships. I get to be with all different kinds of people on the river. The really great thing about this is people are people. I could have a CEO of a large corporation or a prestigious doctor out for the day. Once you are on the river none of that matters. It’s first names and fun. Take’m!
Relationships are what matter in fly fishing, life and in business.
What fly fishing can teach you about business.
Setting up your tackle
Are you good at knots? Are you able to tie them so they are stronger than the line itself? Can you use any kind of line or string attached to your fly? The right equipment goes a long way in fly fishing. Sure there are some things you don’t need. Reels, for example, are more like jewelry. At least when you’re fly fishing for trout. Really all they do is hold your line. If you don’t have good equipment or a good infrastructure your business will fail. You have to know how to use it. This stuff has to be reliable. It has to work.
Picking the right fly
You’ve got to have something of value. Trout don’t just eat any old thing that floats by. They are very savvy. If you’ve ever been fly fishing you know what I mean. Sometimes it seems like every trout in the river just went on vacation. If you don’t have what your customers want, they will go somewhere else. There is almost always something that will work to catch some trout. Everybody wants something. You have to find out what that is.
Picking your spot
Trout don’t live everywhere. Location, location, location. Ok, that one was easy.
Presentation is key
Fly fishing isn’t like spin fishing or ice fishing where you put your line in the water and wait. Fly fishing is active. Fly fishing is trial and error. Fly fishing takes the right presentation. Like my new friend Chris says, “You can’t walk up to someone to shake hands and put your tongue in their mouth.”
That’s a bit graphic. Maybe not the best presentation?
You can’t force feed trout. It’s like getting your kid to eat parsnips. Have you ever eaten parsnips? Don’t. Just Don’t. With trout, if you have problems with your presentation, you can forget it. Trout are smart. So are your customers. They know what they want. Do you?