There’s little that a Sunday morning spent on the surf can’t fix. But are you finding yourself dreaming about surfing while you’re supposed to be grinding at work? Here’s the good news: there are ways you can effectively combine the two. If you want to turn your passion for surfing into a business opportunity beyond your leisure time, keep reading.
1. Identify any secret surf spots
Especially for surfing-oriented businesses, finding the right location to set up is key. Bigger companies may have overlooked less populated or secret surf spots – leaving a niche that your business can explore.
Depending on how far you’re keen to extend your search, there’s a high likelihood that you’ll discover one coastal spot or another where there’s a real need for a surf shop. If you can talk to the locals, you’ll gain a more accurate sense of where people flock to in the surfing season. From there, it’s time to settle on a service or product for your seaside business. You can sell yourself on surfboard rentals, repairs, waxes, wetsuit sales, surfing lessons, ice-creams…the list goes on!
2. Cater to freelancers
Many surfers are digital nomads. However, they often have nowhere to do the “digital” bit. They get out on the waves and do their thing, but when it comes to self-marketing online, they’re restricted to café-hopping.
You may have to identify this need on behalf of your target market, so that they will realise how pressing it is. You’ll then want to cater to that need by offering a working space for freelancers and surfing aficionados. This could be a co-working space outside your office, or a more diffuse set of spaces (for example, a series of WiFi-equipped apartments in popular surfing spots which can be rented out). It’ll mean a lot to your target market that you actually understand the demands of their lifestyle.
3. Be a team player
Your passion for surfing can be integrated into your job in profit-oriented, tangible ways – but also with moral and ethical lessons too.
Surfing isn’t always a solitary sport. Whether it’s a pal or relative who’s watching you from the beach, or other surfing enthusiasts out on the waves with you, surfing is typically a group activity. Everyone else watches out for your safety, and in turn, you look out for them. You celebrate each other’s triumphs as well as each other’s wipe-outs – an excellent depiction of teamwork in action!
You can adopt this principle in business by looking out for the needs of your customers and employees as well as your own. The long and short of it? Be a credible, honest player – not a shark.
4. Value work-life balance
There’s some truth to the chilled-out, tanned, slow-talking surfer stereotype. Out of everyone in the office, surfers typically value work-life balance the most. After all, surfing is a reprieve from the hustle and bustle of the working week, and when more people try it out, it’s likely like the mood of your whole office floor will be happier and more relaxed!
If the boss is a surfer, then there’s a high likelihood that the working culture within the company will be oriented towards employee wellbeing. And remember: taking life – and business – more slowly doesn’t necessarily mean you’ll get less done. It just means you’ll be able to find time to breathe when things get hectic.