Escaping to the Rural Quebec Wilderness Dennis says the Internet makes his extraordinary life and his summer escape to rural Quebec possible.
Dennis Moseley-Williams is a husband and a father of two. He is also a blogger, podcaster, speaker, author and one of only a hand full of certified Experience Economy experts in the world.
“I work with companies that want to stand out by turning their services into experiences,” he explained. They want to become essential, and they do this by innovating around customer experience.”
Dennis shares his expertise in keynote speeches that delight and engage audiences globally. Imagine flying from Ottawa to Davos Switzerland and then Hawaii all in one week to speak for a total of two hours at two different conferences.
“I would fly 200 times per year,” he said.
As you can imagine, travelling this much can lead to burnout. How Dennis prevents it is by taking his family and getting away to their cabin in the foothills of the Laurentian Mountains in rural Quebec.
“The cottage is recognized as a historical site. It’s in the middle of a provincial park where normally, no one is allowed to own property. Our club was established over 100 years ago, so we were grandfathered in. When I tell you that we’re in the middle of nowhere, I mean it literally,” he said.
The one caveat of his summer getaway is that Dennis has to remain accessible to his global clients by having daily Zoom calls and responding to emails and messages.
“Going away is crucial but I have to remain in touch. I wake up in the morning and work for 3 hours, 6 to 9 am, and then I’m done,” he said. “Last summer I hosted zoom meetings with clients and associates in the UK in the morning, and then ended the day with presentations to audiences in California.”
Initially, Dennis struggled with the Internet service he was receiving from another provider.
“It was nothing but anxiety before. If it was a hazy day, it wouldn’t work. I would be worrying about if it was going to be a clear blue sky. I haven’t had any problems since I switched,” he said.
In order to get his cottage connected, our local technicians went on a bit of a journey.
“I directed these guys into the rural Quebec wilderness, keep in mind none of the roads or trails that lead you to the lake have names. I would be shocked if there is a person anywhere that was a stranger service call than I was. I picked them up in a boat along the shore and brought them to the island.” Dennis explained.
Once our technicians finished installing the connection, Dennis decided to test it out. Going from an Internet connection where he couldn’t stream video at all, he and his wife were pleasantly surprised.
“We both laid down on different couches holding our iPads and streamed movies at the same time,” he said. “I know that is a little sacrilegious, to go into the forest to watch TV, but we spend weeks up there at a time so having access to Netflix is actually pretty wonderful.”
Dennis said that having this Internet connection makes his extraordinary life possible.
“I need to know that tomorrow morning when I open Zoom it will work. Me showing up is a non-negotiable deal. If I didn’t have Xplornet, I couldn’t go to the cottage in the summer and if I couldn’t go to the cottage in the summer, I’d have to stop doing my job. I need that summer off. It’s necessary. It keeps me sane,” he said.
The summer in rural Quebec is also the time when Dennis does his creative planning.
“I’m in the middle of nowhere with space and time to think. I get some headspace and I get to create. Creating means researching – which also requires the Internet,” he said.
He also appreciates being able to have a seasonal connection.
“Xplornet turns it on May 1st every year and turns it off November 1st. Every year I walk into my cabin, take out my MacBook which is already automatically connected and carry on,” he said in a recent Tweet.
Dennis can’t say enough about how grateful he is to be able to escape to rural Quebec in the summers while remaining connected.
“When you think about what I am able to do – literally leave a meeting in Manhattan one morning, and by the next morning, I’m able to tune in from the edge of a lake in rural Quebec. It’s amazing,” he said.