“If it shows on the compass you’re late… Hun”
This is my favorite saying but hard to realize. Everybody wants to tack right in front of the favorable wind shift. But how do you know what the right moment is? Sometimes I am “in the zone” and know. It’s not about thinking anymore but about sensing, feeling and staying open. The trick is to be as receptive as possible. And Act. This motivates me time and time again to step in the boat searching for the zone and looking for Kairos. But you need to be gentle for yourself. That’s the Hun (Honey) part.
I’ve been sailing competitively as long as I can remember. This brought us in 1998 the title of World Champion in the Flying Dutchman (and twice North American Champion and Dutch Champion). Out of 117 boats from 26 countries we were the fastest and the smartest. It had to do with presence, flow and being fully in the moment.
Recently I started regatta sailing with my son in the Star Class (picture). I have hardly enjoyed sailing as much as I do now. Sailing is very straightforward: every decision you make is good or bad. And that is clear in an instant. So the learning opportunities are tremendous and easy to translate to life and work.
In 2015 I teamed up for the occasion with my former partner in the Flying Dutchman and that brought us immediately the title of “Open Dutch Champion 2015”. We were pretty proud after not having sailed together for so many years.
Dutch Olympic Sailing Team
I’m working with the Dutch Olympic sailors and their coaches to transfer their knowledge to business and leadership. I’ve written a book ‘Passion for Performance’ in which they share their journey to the Olympics and we talk about flow, decision making, coaching and organizing for performance. The book is published in 2018.
With little opportunities to go regatta sailing due to covid, I bought myself a racebike. The first year I rode over 9500 km and the second 8700. That’s more than I drove for the business in my car. It’s way more physical than sailing and brings new insights in building fitness, recuperation, proteins, cadence, power meters and other gear. It’s fun to dive into a new world and learn.