Today we’d like to introduce you to Taylor Flake.
Hi Taylor, so excited to have you on the platform. So, before we get into questions about your work-life, maybe you can bring our readers up to speed on your story and how you got to where you are today.
Our family lived in New York for the past 10 years. I was an executive with PepsiCo where I worked for 21 years. At age 49 I decided to take a different path, so our family moved to the small town of Mona, where I owned 100 acres of dry farm. We decided to build a house on it. It was a lot of work, but we are very happy here. We named our ranch Far Away Ranch because it is always out of town. We have no electrical lines to the house and are 100% off-grid solar. I knew very little about horses when we moved here, having just ridden them as a kid when visiting grandparents. We have nine kids, and they all wanted to go on rides so we bought a bunch of calm horses. We have twelve now and two horse trailers. Needless to say, we have gone horse crazy; we went on twelve-pack trips last year in the mountains. My sons have even starting training and selling mustangs. I started my own coaching and consulting firm which I named after my horse, Sage, Sage Executive Coaches. I started writing a bi-weekly blog post called Leadership Lessons from The Land about insights I glean while working on the ranch. I did leadership development and team building while at PepsiCo, so I started to host leadership retreats at my ranch. I have a partner, Dan Woodland who is a real horse expert. He has a ranch with 30 horses south of town and used to coach the High School rodeo team. His sons are champion ropers. I lead the team-building and leadership development sessions in my living room, and he reinforces the principles taught through the experience of calf roping and horseback riding. We have mown done over a dozen of these events and are receiving excellent feedback. Moving from New York to Mona has been a huge change, but it’s best decision I have ever made.
We all face challenges, but looking back, would you describe it as a relatively smooth road?
Most of the struggles have been in building the horse ranch. I have no experience with this. I am the consummate city slicker. Luckily the local farmers and ranchers have taken me under their wing and tried to show me the ropes. We had a milk cow we could never get pregnant and had to slaughter, a new colt that lost his eye at two weeks old. Two horses that died of colic, and several others who received vastly wounds. Two horse accidents where my ribs and back was broken and a drought where all our seeds seemed to just blow away. Still, I wouldn’t change the experiences I have been having for all the world.
We’ve been impressed with Sage Executive Coaches, but for folks who might not be as familiar, what can you share with them about what you do and what sets you apart from others?
At Sage, our mission statement is: Saddle Up for a Transformative Ride — Igniting high performance by converting authentic experiences into behavior change
My clients achieve dramatic personal change by embracing the concepts of “awareness” and “choice.” They become aware of insights about themselves and their teams through robust psychometric and feedback tools. They then choose to change critical behaviors with the help of prioritization and reinforcement mechanisms. Strengths are enhanced, gaps closed, and behavioral change is verified all within the context of authentic experiences.
In terms of your work and the industry, what are some of the changes you are expecting to see over the next five to ten years?
Coming out of the pandemic, I think there is huge pent-up demand for teams to reconnect in authentic ways to rebuild trust and relationships that have frayed for working remotely. I am seeing this with increased interest in our Equine Leadership Retreats.
- Half-day team horseback riding event – $3,000 for a team of 6-12 members
- Full-day event including meals, classroom instruction, meals calf roping, and horseback ride in the mountains – $6,000 for a team of 6-12 members
- Multi-day event including meals, lodging, Chuckwagon dinner and campfire, multiple rides, and ranch activities over 2 -3 day – $25,ooo for teams of 6-12 members
- Website: www.Sageexecutivecoaches.com