Flow Over Fear: A Year Of Yes

A “Year of Yes” with Katie Rucker

Do you want to push past your perceived limits but don’t know where to start? In this episode of the Flow Over Fear podcast, Adam Hill interviews adventure enthusiast Katie Rucker about her incredible journey of self-discovery through challenging herself both in and outside of her work.

As the COO of a family business, Katie felt stuck until she decided to embark on a “Year of Yes,” saying yes to every opportunity that scared her. This led her to run her first half marathon and eventually climb to Everest Base Camp. Katie also shares how facing fears through endurance sports helped her gain confidence in her abilities and find clarity about who she wanted to be as a leader. She discusses lessons learned from navigating leadership and culture shifts within an evolving family company.

Here are some power takeaways from today’s conversation:

  • Overcoming fears and pushing limits through adventure racing
  • Finding your voice in the business
  • Leadership, culture shift, and sibling partnerships in a family business
  • Succession planning and cultural challenges in family businesses
  • The power of assuming positive intent

Episode Highlights:

[08:33] Facing Fears and Finding Community through Adventure Racing

When Katie decided to challenge herself by running her first half marathon, she discovered more than just a new physical ability. She realized she loved the feeling of pushing past what she thought was possible for her body. But equally as motivating was the sense of community she found among others seeking similar challenges. There was strength in their shared goal of pushing boundaries. As Katie kept facing fears through adventure, she gained confidence in her mental and physical resilience. Each small victory prepared her to take on greater goals. 

[24:07] Lessons on Finding Your Voice in the Business

When you take on a leadership role within a family company, it can be easy to feel like you don’t have a defined place. You start to question where you fit in and who you are as an authentic leader. Katie realized she didn’t need to just passively accept what was handed to her – she could have an active voice at the table. Discovering you have the power to chart your course within a family company is empowering. It allows you to bring your full self to the business while still appreciating where you came from. The lesson is, find courage to speak up for yourself while also listening to those who came before.

[41:05] The Power of Assuming Positive Intent

In high-stakes family relationships, it’s easy to make assumptions that breed conflict. But Katie has learned the transformative power of assuming positive intent. Even in tough conversations, assuming positive intent keeps interactions solution-focused. It’s human to slip into defensiveness, but reframing disputes this way diffuses tension. Hence, it’s important to foster an environment where people feel heard and supported – not attacked. That’s the foundation for meaningful progress.

Resources Mentioned:

Next Gen Collaborative

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