In Case You Were Wondering, We Chose Ambition

In Case You Were Wondering, We Chose Ambition

February 15, 2016

We’re consumed.

We wake up at the crack of dawn every day (with help from this lady), immediately pull out our laptops, start in on pot one of coffee, and get to work.

We try to shower every other day at least. That doesn’t always happen. We have some good blogging friends living nearby so would love to see them a couple of times a week. That doesn’t always happen either. Twice lately I’ve realized I spent the whole day wearing my shirt inside out without notice.

We are in a remarkably beautiful location where, upon arrival, I vowed to spend a few minutes on the roof each morning stretching and meditating. Instead, I think I can count all occurrences of that on one hand. Although probably necessary, considering how most of my days are spent hunched over my laptop, those moments feel too indulgent and frivolous.

If you are wondering what direction we took since writing this post, we went with an Option A/B hybrid. (To refresh: Option A was to slow down our travels to focus on business and Option B was to invest in help to progress our business further.) How silly of me to think that it could just be one or the other, or that even Option C (to say screw it and travel, travel, travel) would be considered for long.

Of course, it’s never that easy.

San Agustin Etla The Box Patio
The rooftop patio that I’ve rarely visited.

The decision to go the hybrid route was due to a significant serendipitous occurrence. While Pete and I were actually wavering between A and C, suddenly Option B became very real when this guy announced his free agent status.

We have known Andrew for several years through his previous roles in the travel industry and his ever-witty and sarcastic presence online. On initial consideration he seemed a perfect fit: fantastic experience, great connections, and with a personality that we both enjoy. And now, one month into Andrew joining our team, we realize how right we were to approach him, and how fortunate we are that he said yes.

It is a significant investment on our part, to be sure, but one that we are sure is going to pay off. Within the first month he brought in our first new client of the year, and the other potential opportunities that are laid out before us are immense. We’re having exciting conversations with travel brands that we never before thought possible.

With Andrew, our team is four strong (Katie has miraculously stuck with us for over a year now and kept us afloat while we were off having the time of our lives last year). And so in early 2016, we wanted to start off the new year, and this new era of our business, with a bang. We all met in Austin for a bit of brainstorming, but most importantly, a giant team bear-hug over craft beer and BBQ.

Austin Hecktic Media

Back here in Mexico, we are riding the significant momentum and camaraderie we gained in Austin. Within our secret-Hecktic-Media-Facebook-group we are actively tossing around ideas and generating team discussions that are keenly guiding our business (when they don’t dissolve into a deluge of emojis and sarcastic sticker usage, that is). Some of the ideas that have emerged are things that we have not seen before in the industry. Every day is encouraging and exciting and fun.

The best part? Andrew’s presence, and his confidence in our ability to succeed, has given Pete and I a massive energetic boost as well. For the last couple of years we’ve coasted on the business that has come to us, but now we are actively and boldly looking outwards. I even let Andrew convince me that a webinar was a good idea (something I never would have considered before), and we are already over 70% booked with zero spent on advertising and a whole month yet until it runs. There is an obvious need for what we are doing, and Hecktic Media is finally stepping up and making our offer with conviction.

I truly couldn’t be more excited about it. This is the first time that I feel definitively sure about my ideas and opinions. (It may seem silly, considering that we’ve been at this now for several years, but it took a similar amount of time in my old corporate career too.) I now feel like I’ve had enough time to absorb the knowledge I need to be able to act. Not that I don’t have stuff still to learn, but I finally feel like I can speak from a position of authority.

I’m trusting my instincts. I’m even turning down business I don’t think is a good fit – whether for us as a company or for the travel industry as a whole. You won’t find us peddling cheap marketing tactics – we’re focusing on quality projects that are going to help our whole community grow.

And, most significantly, what I thought might turn into a tough discussion between Pete and I over the ultimate structure of the team ended up being a non-issue. “Of course you are the CEO,” he said without a second thought.

It’s all about confidence. And timing, I believe. So many important factors have lined up that I am positive success is ours. All of the decisions we are making, from how to conduct our business to the photos to use on our website (which is still a work-in-progress), feel very important. It’s all coming together, making every day more thrilling than the last.

I feel like these moments need to be remembered (which is why I hope to record more of them here, behind-the-scenes). They seem life-changing, even. I believe that we are onto something big.


P.S. All of this sadly means that our regular blog narratives are going to be fewer as we have less time for travel. In the meantime we are considering bringing on some guest writers (EEK! How would you feel about that?) or will just fill more pages here behind-the-scenes. All is being considered.

P.P.S. Want to read more behind-the-scenes? Click through here.


  1. Always love reading about your adventures behind the scenes, Dalene. I think some of your positivity rubbed off on my as well, so thanks for that 🙂

    I have no doubt that great things are in store for Hecktic Media; I’ve always admired the way you do things (well, what I see of it online). More power to you guys!

  2. Thanks for the look behind the scenes. It’s encouraging to read the reality behind making a professionaly done location independent business

    1. Thanks Tim. I hope to share more as we go…I’ve been listening to the “Start-up” podcast and that’s been a big help for me, maybe I can do the same for others along the way!

  3. I’m really excited for you guys. You’re doing great work, and it’s awesome that you’ll be doing even MORE in the future! Can’t wait to see what’s next!

    (And webinars can be SUCH a great tool. I loved running them when I worked for Edgar!)

    1. Thanks! We can’t wait to see what else we come up with as well! So many good things being considered right now.

      I am terrified of the webinar, but I’ll get through it. 🙂

  4. Such an exciting time for you and a brilliant addition to your team. You guys certainly made some leaps and bounds in 2015!

    Can’t wait to see what happens with Hecktic Media this year. Good luck!

  5. So pumped for you guys! It’s funny how as long as you have that energy boost, you really can take on more than you thought possible. Having the right support system, and those who believe in you, makes all the difference. Hurrah for Hecktic Media!

  6. Keep in mind that you don’t necessarily have to go somewhere new to write an interesting “travel” post. Experience comes from everywhere, and it’s all new to us even if the next travel posts are in the same small town, and about the same local restaurant you hit up once a week, for months and months, you know? But guest bloggers are fun too. 🙂

  7. I so appreciate your Hecktic Travels style! No spammy/salesy posts, just honest and deep writing on places you are exploring. I also enjoy the BTS aspect too, it gives us readers a chance to see you being silly, sarcastic and real 🙂 thanks so much!

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