Olive Strachan North West Export Champion 2016
Inspiring Business North West
phone +44 (0) 161 509 2017

I recently returned from a fabulous two-week break in the Caribbean to visit and spend some quality time with my family. I have returned rejuvenated and refreshed, re-engergised and refocused. This is how I would describe myself after a lovely holiday on the beautiful island of Dominica.

I meet with dozens of Senior Leaders every week, helping them to grow their teams and get more productivity out of themselves and the people they work with. Some feel the time to just think and switch off is limited, and a great deal of research has made clear the need for Leaders to take a quality break in order to re-energise, revitalise and refocus themselves and thus boost their businesses.

The great Microsoft guru Bill Gates has been known to escape to a secluded spot for what he calls 'think week', during which time his family, friends and employees are allegedly banned from disturbing him. This time to himself, with just his thoughts for company, serves as his thinking and creative time, and it has helped him to come up with his most innovative ideas. Another entrepreneur, Michael Karnjanaprakorn, has commented that 'think week' (which Facebook chairman Mark Zuckerberg also advocates) will "invigorate your thinking!"

Professor Cary Cooper's research supports this theory, suggesting that 'people who take holidays return feeling healthier and psychologically more robust'. I can certainly endorse this theory myself.

Spending time away in a tropical paradise definitely gave me the boost and thinking time I needed. I have reflected and identified the ways in which this timely and much-needed break benefitted me and my business.

The trip to Dominica allowed me to get away from my organisation, people, media, and business culture and get back to nature. This enabled me to return refocused to lead, inspire, and close deals. I had time to put major challenges into perspective, and various solutions arose about how these can be expedited. Standing on a volcanic, mineral-rich beach with the waves of the Atlantic Ocean roaring in the background, the sun setting in the distance, and lush vegetation all around helped me to focus my mind on the issues that are of vital importance. Although only recently returned, I will continue to reflect and refocus, and I will certainly be recommending the beautiful island of Dominica to my clients! I just can't wait to go back!

Meanwhile, as founder of OSR, I'll continue to nurture aspirations and fulfil professional dreams.

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