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Crooked Compass Experiences

Crooked Compass Experiences

So, there is this woman who walks into the Tank and says “I find and organise the most incredible experiences on the planet and I want you to invest in me” or words to that effect. Great pitch, great product —I thought to myself.

Lisa Pagotto founder of Crooked Compass has all the elements I am looking for in my invested companies: passion, persistence, positivity, experience and a deep sense of purpose. She is ideal… but I don’t invest — merely because at this point she appears like a ‘key person risk’. I do, however, offer to mentor her.

As it so happens, since the filming of the Crooked Compass episode Lisa’s business has gone from strength to strength. She is now in ‘flow’ and her business has gained momentum — the planning, systems and processes (and a few people around her) she has put in place are helping her to scale. Lisa has been relentless about finding the right approach to market.

Recently Lisa came to visit the team at The Big Red Group to share her start up journey and what the process of being on Shark Tank was like, including how she has systematically implemented the advice she received.

RedBalloon has curated a selection of the Crooked-Compass ‘out of this world’ experiences, so that our business customers and people with RedBalloon vouchers or Gift Cards can put them towards this amazing range.

More recently we caught up in Darwin at the Travel Managers conference. Lisa was a sponsor of the event… and as I took to the stage to share my journey and insights on business growth to the 500 attendees, I wove in Lisa’s start up journey.

Anya Lorimer from One Talk Technology also joined the event to hear me speak… and what a delight to have two of the alumni from Series 3 Episode 12 join me as we watched the episode together, both nervous and excited.

Both Anya and Lisa shared with me how it felt to them coming to the Tank and getting outside of their comfort zone. And whilst it was nerve wracking, both agreed that it was a wonderful experience, which taught them a lot. It also makes any other pitch or presentation seem like a walk in the park.

So, I suspect I need to give as good as I get — Lisa has challenged me to go outside my own comfort zone and experience something only a few people will ever have a chance to do. As such, in June 2018 I will be hosting, with Lisa, a small group to visit the edge of the world.

We will be taking a small group to meet the Tsaachin tribe or Reindeer People, a diminishing nomadic tribe with an estimated number of only 200-400 people left spread across 100 sq km of northern Mongolia. The Tsaatan’s entire existence is based on their reindeer herds which provide them with milk for producing cheese, antlers for carving and medicinal purposes, transportation and on the odd occasion, meat. I understand that the visit to the reindeer herding people plays a role to help the culture survive. Although very few travellers venture into this realm (7 hours by horse from any other village), this experience initiative provides them with a supplemental income and cultural exchange education for both our travellers and local Tsaachin people.

This may well put my positivity to the test — but as a huge advocate of experiences and learning, I’m looking forward to meeting other likeminded people on this small group adventure. Believe it or not the last time I was in Mongolia was 1987 (I came on the Trans-Siberian railway from Europe to Beijing stopping briefly in Ulaanbaatar).

If you would like to join us – or are looking for some more information, your first step is to click here…

Also published on Medium.

Reader Interactions


  1. Would you be interested in someone filming the adventure. This sounds like a great story to tell.

  2. Good on you Naomi you are one of the true Australian business leaders who can inspire and mentor small business that dare too dream.

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