After joining the Orca Bay “pod” almost two years ago, one of the largest projects I immediately took on was the redesign of www.orcabayseafoods.com and development of an online store. As any marketer, web designer or developer would tell you, the long journey from concept to final product is a tumultuous one. After many, many months the site was finally ready launch…ironically enough it was also days before I was set to summit Mount Rainier. For those who aren’t familiar with Mount Rainier, it is the largest (and 2nd tallest) mountain in the lower 48. The success rate of summiting is about 50% and in 2011 I added climbing it to my bucket list.
Fast forward and spoiler alert: After more than 24 hours of hiking and climbing I made it – all 14,410 feet. The view was more than words or photos can ever describe and the trek up and (especially) back down were by far two of the most emotionally and physically draining experiences to date. Making it to the top wasn’t the only the feel good surprise for me that week though. It was my last day in the office before I left for the climb. Our CFO, Dave McGee, left me with wisdoms from his previous Rainier and Mt. Baker climbs. Our sales team filled my email with short blurbs of encouragement letting me know the whole office was “rooting for me”. The weekly photographs from hikes amongst the Northern Cascades by Larry Colling, our Senior Purchasing Manager, inspired and reminded me to pause and admire my surroundings during the trek. Chef Bo even sent me off with one of our new frozen dinner entrees, Seafood Albondigas. I shamelessly devoured all two servings.
I was overwhelmed by the encouragement from my colleagues. The support and peace of mind they provided about the website launch in my absence made it possible for me to mentally focus on the my climb.
Upon my return to the office, the success of the website going live and summit were celebrated appropriately, as we all prepared for the next adventure in seafood business and embraced the beautiful Pacific Northwest that surrounds us while doing so – day in and day out.