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Using horse training to guide the business elite towards enlightenment

Using horse training to guide the business elite towards enlightenmentLisa Arie has trained with horses for years, but her specialty is in training executives.The so-called "CEO whisperer" lives on 160 acres of Colorado plains, where since 2005, she and husband Jess have run an experiential learning center for CEOs, philanthropists, and entrepreneurs to unplug and discover how they can lead more mindful lives.
 
Vista Caballo, which roughly translates to "perspective of the horse" in Spanish, uses horses to guide the business elite through enlightenment. It's no ordinary corporate retreat.
 
"We can learn a lot from a species that thinks quite differently that we do," Arie says. "A horse is going to be honest with you. It's not safe for them if they lie to you. Their self-preservation is very important. They are prey animals — different from us — we are predators."
 
"If I can have a prey animal feel safe with me as a predator, it means I'm probably doing something pretty right as a leader," she says.
 
Over 800 people have taken advantage of Vista Caballo's offerings since 2006.
 
The signature program at Vista Caballo invites participants to stay three days and four nights. Arie talks to executives before their arrival about their expectations and goals, and she creates opportunities for "interspecies interaction" to help clients forge new ways of thinking. They might learn to approach a horse without spooking it, for example.