You may not think at first that there’s much correlation between trekking up a big mountain to the summit over days, at altitude and in all kinds of weather; or jumping off a boat in to the ocean and holding your breath as you free dive to look for fish, only to meet eye to eye with a shark! These adventures both on land and in the ocean, have taught local adventurers and business owners, Lisa and Keith Marshall, lessons in resilience, which they believe helped them to take the brave step to opening Rock Hop Espresso in Coolum at the end of 2020.
“I have hiked and trekked mountain trails all over the world, including the three highest peaks in Africa and the GR20 in Corsica, known as Europe’s toughest long distance trek. My first encounters with altitude were not pretty, and I went away with a bruised ego, but a keen willingness to learn how to manage my body and mind better in challenging conditions.” said Mrs Marshall, a Trek Coach and avid hiker. She believes resilience is something you need in bucket loads if you want to be successful in small business, but the only way to build it, is to put yourself in new and challenging situations, often. Her husband Keith, a keen spear fisherman and free diver, loves not just being immersed in nature for wellbeing, but for the challenge it provides both physically and mentally. “When I’m out in the ocean in a remote area diving with a buddy, we are totally reliant on watching each other’s backs. We are committed to safety and looking out for each other."
His mantra: "Never let your guard down in nature or in business. Yes you can enjoy moments, but always be aware of what’s happening around you and how quickly things can change. Adaptation to changing circumstances and responding appropriately to those changes, is a vital skill in adventure and in business.”
Both Lisa and Keith believe in the importance of relationships based on honesty, service and a positive attitude, when engaging with both their team and their customers.
“Taking on challenges out in nature, requires a great level of preparation, empathy, courage, teamwork and resilience. We believe the same applies to owning and running a small business, especially at a time when there is much fear and uncertainty around the economy and the prospects for business.” said Ms Marshall.
Together the adventurous couple brought to life their new business at the end of 2020: Rock Hop Espresso, serving specialist coffee, locally roasted on the coast.
“It was literally like moving mountains at the end of the year to get the design, fit out and team recruited and trained to be open before Christmas. But we did it, and the support from locals and visitors alike has been amazing. We know there will be challenges ahead, but we feel proud to have created a positive, friendly place, serving the best coffee we know, at a time when so many would have thought it impossible to do.”