The road less traveled to success

Foster grads at a train station abroadMy name is Robbie Taylor and I am a 2013 Graduate of Foster. Upon graduating, I took a Management Consulting Position at PwC in Seattle where I worked for 2 1/2 years prior to taking off to travel the world. Although one of the scariest decisions of my life, I couldn’t be happier, and I truly feel blessed for all of the opportunities it has provided me.

Obviously, quitting my Big 4 job to follow my passion was a major leap of faith, but there are several key motivations that helped me come to my decision. First, PwC was extremely supportive of my decision and understood that the conventional path isn’t for everyone. Having the backing and support of my partners and colleagues helped me validate that this was the right decision for me and I couldn’t be more grateful to them.

Second, each person’s view of success is different. I made the decision to travel shortly after being promoted to Senior Associate and heard many questions along the lines of, “aren’t you scared to leave when you are in such a good position?” I am very passionate about having a successful business career, however, if I stayed in one city, at one job, I wouldn’t look at that as success, regardless of promotions, bonuses etc. I believe that everyone needs to explore how they value success and not let conventional wisdom get in the way of following your dreams and passions.

Third, no time is ever “the right time.” So many people have bold ambitions to make major changes in their life whether that be changing jobs, moving cities, going traveling etc., but they can always find excuses for why now isn’t the right time. I had dreamt of doing this world travel route since high school but constantly found reasons to push it back; I finally decided there was no better time than now.

Foster grads in front of ruinsLastly, I am the luckiest guy in the world to have two of my best friends, Sam McAvoy and Josh Aguilar (also both Foster Grads), who share similar ambitions and decided to take the leap of faith with me.

Our plan for the year is to make it to every continent outside of Antarctica (we are currently 7 1/2 months in and through 3 continents). I could go on for pages about all of our highlights so far but will just list a few for the sake of brevity.

First, we started our trip by driving a campervan around Australia for 6 1/2 weeks where we covered around 7,500 miles. I was born and spent my early years in Australia, so this was amazing to return to my roots and explore the land down under. Throughout our time in Australia, we found ourselves stuck in flash floods, were evacuated from a beach for shark activity, got caught in electric storms in the Outback, and went scuba diving on the Great Barrier Reef. It was an amazing adventure and one none of us will forget.

Second, to traverse from Asia to Europe we took the Transiberian Railroad from Beijing to St. Petersburg. This journey took us 2 1/2 weeks and covered 5,772 miles. The voyage was unbelievable, traveling through some of the most remote parts of the world – we even stopped for 2 days in Mongolia and lived with Nomads in the mountains. I can definitely say that this is a must do for anyone with an adventurous spirit.

Foster grads on a boat while traveling abroadA final highlight would have to be our motorbike adventures through South East Asia. Sam, Josh, and I all had little to no experience on bikes but quickly figured out they are the cheapest and best means of transportation in these parts. We traversed the Indonesian island of Bali where we saw some amazing remote villages, were caught in a monsoon, drove through beautiful rice paddies, and saw a side of the country that would be hard to capture any other way. In Thailand we again biked all around the North and saw hot springs, mud baths, temples, and jungles. Often times we wouldn’t even take a map as getting lost was one of our favorite parts!

Next up on our journey we are headed on a 65 day journey through from Uganda to South Africa on an overland truck. In the process we will drive through 10 different African countries and camp out every night. Once done with Africa, we will head to South America but plans are still highly undefined (it’s always more fun that way).

Seeing exotic and amazing places is incredible, but I truly believe the best part of traveling is the people you meet. We have met people from all corners of the world who practice different religions and come from varied cultures; however, we are constantly overwhelmed by the genuine kindness of everyone we meet.

Besides the fun and adventure of this odyssey, I believe it will provide me with a perspective and objectivity that will enable me to take on new challenges in the next stages of my life and urge everyone to truly find their own definition of success.