5 Leadership Lessons Learned From Ice Climbing

The last 4 years have seen me attempting to conquer a major fear of mine: Heights… Yeah, the man who has jumped out of a plane at 10,000 feet and climbs frozen waterfalls is petrified by heights.

That’s one of the reasons for my many crazy adventures. Especially ice climbing along the Pictured Rocks National Lakeshore.

leadership lessons learned from ice climbing

Through these climbs, I’ve seen many leadership principles carried out. And I want to share them with you today.

Leadership Lessons From Ice Climbing

1. Offer encouragement: Four years ago, I was a newbie to the ice climbing world. All I’d ever seen were pictures and videos of other ice climbers.

While it looked awe-inspiring, it also looked dangerous and scary. Especially for someone scared of heights.

This year, we had 5 new climbers on our trip and I was reminded of this.

Leaders Need To Get On Belay

One of the coolest experiences I’ve had was a recent ice climbing excursion to the upper peninsula of Michigan. The time was spent with a great group of guys all looking for adventure and finding it in the great outdoors. Not only that, it also taught me a valuable leadership lesson.

Image by Laurel Fan

Image by Laurel Fan

A term often used in climbing, whether it be rock climbing or ice climbing, is belay. For those of you who don’t know what belaying is, belaying refers to a series of techniques climbers use to exert friction on a climbing rope so their climbing partner will not fall far. The climber on belay does this by applying friction through the use of a belay clip and keeping the rope taut.