I wasn’t a natural born Business Coach. In fact, I started adult life as a moderately successful (and unengaged) Engineer. Work was never my focus, I’d live for time spent cycling with my mates. It was during this paddle-posse that I was tasked with finding and buying some race gear as we looked to turn our mateship into a serious race team.
I explored the caverns of the Cycling Wear world—it left a lot to be desired. And just like that, I created and built Seight Custom Cycling Wear. Before too long I was running a $300,000 business from my kitchen table while still tinkering away at engineering. I wasn’t even 30, and all the success made me arrogant.
I left my job as an engineer and suddenly had to rely on my small business for financial support in a time when the Australian dollar had just plummeted. Right at this time, my wife announced that she was leaving our marriage, in part due to the time and money that my venture had cost us.
I dropped the ball. A business with potential soon fizzled to a $200,000 debt. I made business decisions, like an $20,000 rebrand, on impulse instead of practicality. My once confident nature had been torn apart. I was directionless.
I jumped on my bike with the aim of clearing my mental-fog.
As I rode, I could see two different cycling routes emerge. I realised this was my fork in the road and the option I chose would decide my future: I could either quit and return to work for someone else, or recalibrate and make my business a success.
I chose the latter. My situation began to change when I realized that the world owed me nothing, and I owed myself everything. Success started—and stopped—with me.
We went back to core business and what was making money, not getting distracted by shiny new tactics. I created proper processes, which empowered my team to take positive action. We documented everything and measured its success.
It took 18 months to build Seight Custom Cycling Wear back up again, but I was able to take it beyond its previous peak—and this time, without the arrogance.
What started out as mates riding bikes transitioned into a cycling clothing company that supplied multiple national champions in road, cyclocross, on the track and even a World Champion. We made social impacts by supporting charities like Ride to Conquer Cancer, which fit within the business’ new values.
Making the decision to sell my business was long and difficult, but ultimately it was the right time. So, once again, I was at a crossroads. What was I going to do next? A holiday.
I met Erin, my partner, in 2016. I didn’t know what was next in my business, but on one of our holidays she challenged me to consider what I really loved doing.
I love personal growth, I love rising to a challenge and I love helping my friends and family move mountains in the course of their lives.
Through research, I learnt that there was a glut of business coaches out there, but not many with the lived experience that I had. You’ll either see a more senior business coach, who while offering a level of expertise is often hampered by limited ability to adapt to the digital age. Alternatively, you have the young bucks with no real business experience—just a flimsy life coaching ‘certificate’ and some successful social media accounts.
I began Evolve to Grow in 2017 with a clear intent to do better. I want to give business owners time and freedom, enabling it to happen right now. My mission is simple, I want myself and my team to act as your Sherpa as we scale your business mountain together.
Evolve to Grow is about arming you with the knowledge and skill to confidently separate yourself from your business. As a business owner, it’s the only way to relax and enjoy the life you’ve built for yourself.
Tristan is available to speak about his experience in building (and rebuilding) a business, life as a Business Sherpa, or whatever else is currently on his mind.Download Tristan Wright’s Speaker and Podcast Profile
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