What Does Scooping Poop and Putting on Thousands of Dog Booties have to do with Developing Leadership, Effective Teambuilding, Perfecting Communications and Achieving Your Goals?
EVERYTHING!'Be the Lead Dog'
Two women with a passion for mushing share stories, provide explanations, and detail the seven key lessons -- taught by their sled dogs -- that can be applied to the reader's own life.
'Be the Lead Dog' [excerpt]| May 14, 2010
To celebrate her 50th birthday, musher Liz Parrish wanted to train her own dog team and run the 2008 Iditarod. After retiring from a high tech career in California's Silicon Valley, Liz bought a beautiful lodge near Klamath Falls, Ore. and began turning it into a pet-friendly destination resort, Crystalwood Lodge. After attending a mushing boot camp and discovering a passion for the sport, she assembled her first dog team from her motley crew of housedogs, including an Australian Shepherd, a Norwegian Elkhound, and a Beagle mix. But Liz got hooked on the mushing lifestyle, and set racing in the Iditarod as her 10-year goal. Finally, in March 2008, Liz and her team -- huskies now -- finished the Iditarod in 14 days with 14 dogs, an extraordinary achievement for a rookie. Liz had achieved her lifelong dream.
Barbara Schaefer had always been interested in animals, and although her schooling led to a degree in mechanical engineering from UCLA, Siberian huskies have been her abiding passion for over 20 years. She volunteered for the Iditarod Trail Sled Dog Race for 10 years, earning the nickname Barbara "Dog Drop" Schaefer for her outstanding care of dropped dogs at remote checkpoints. Barbara and her Siberian huskies have been featured on the Discovery Channel's Animal Planet, PBS and other television shows, and she raised and trained the dog who played the lead in the Disney movie "Eight Below." She and her Siberian huskies have earned numerous awards in dog shows and mushing events across the country, and she and her husband and 20 Siberian huskies live in northern California.
Sharing a passion for mushing and sled dogs, Liz and Barb teamed up and created a business together called Life... Through Dogs, which is focused on sharing life lessons they've learned from their many years of working with their sled dog teams. Offering clinics, workshops, seminars, camps, individual and group coaching and more, Barb and Liz reach out beyond the dog world to help others achieve their full potential, and to have fun celebrating and enhancing personal relationships with dogs. Their clients range from Intel Corporation and the Oregon Institute of Technology to the Boy Scouts of America, from elementary through high schools and to the International Sled Dog Racing Association.
Now Liz and Barb have teamed up to write "Be The Lead Dog: 7 Life-Changing Lessons Taught By Sled Dogs." The book lays out foundational lessons and strategies for achieving success in leadership, team building, communications and life, developed from their extensive experiences with sled dogs. Drawing on their hard-won "insider secrets" on the relationships between sled dogs and their mushers and how those secrets can be applied to everyday life, Liz and Barb share stories, provide explanations, and detail the seven key lessons taught by their sled dogs, but which can be applied to the reader's own life: "Sometimes it takes thought to see how a situation would have a different outcome if you were to apply these lessons. Other times it is an intuitive recognition, a gut feeling, an 'aha.'"