I spent a lot of years traveling on business. I’ve worked for companies based in the UK, Germany, Italy, Japan and the U.S., so it’s safe to assume that I’ve spent a fair amount of time in each country (and plenty of others in between). When people would say, “Oh, you get to travel on business, how lucky,” I’d remind them that I HAD to travel on business, and there’s a distinct difference. You GET to travel when you’re staying in nice hotels, sleeping late and sightseeing. You HAVE to travel when you stay in convenient hotels, sleep when you can and see the inside of a conference room or a convention center. On business, there isn’t much of a difference between Des Moines, Iowa and Tokyo, Japan, except that Tokyo is a longer flight.
As an accomplished racer and CEO of DC Shoes, you’d think that Ken Block has it made. Surely, he stays in only the best hotels and eats meals carefully crafted by his personal traveling chef. He sleeps in late and shows up to meetings and events when he wants, right? As you can see in the above video, which follows Block from his win in 2010’s 100 Acre Wood Rally through his WRC debut in Mexico, Block puts in the hours. He’s up at 5:00 in the morning, working out with his trainer. He stays in ordinary hotels, just like the rest of us. He sucks down plates of reconstituted eggs, just like any other business traveler. He puts in long hours at his job, then goes to corporate functions at night, just like any other mid-level manager. He does this for days on end, in one country after another, because it’s who he is. Whether or not you’re a Ken Block fan, you have to respect his work ethic. He’s just like us road warrior types, only richer. A lot richer.