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Winning Ways & Olympic Lessons

Posted 1456 Days Ago in: Bev James, Tips

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Just over 12 months ago, the whole nation was gripped by the drama unfolding in a formerly neglected and rundown corner of East London. It says a lot about the incredible pace of the world that we now all live and work in that the glorious celebration that was last summer's Olympic Games feels like a very distant memory despite the great anniversary games that took place over the weekend.

Just over 12 months ago, the whole nation was gripped by the drama unfolding in a formerly neglected and rundown corner of East London. It says a lot about the incredible pace of the world that we now all live and work in that the glorious celebration that was last summer’s Olympic Games feels like a very distant memory despite the great anniversary games that took place over the weekend.

For a few short weeks the whole country joined together in a fantastic celebration of everything that is amazing and inspiring about this country and we loved every minute of it. The success that came our way 12 months ago taught us some valuable lessons about what sets apart the winners from the losers in this world.

It was unsurprising I suppose, that in the build-up to the games, the headlines were dominated by negative stories about security firms failing to do their job properly and worries about half-full venues. But once the event got under way the feelings of pride and joy swept across the country and I think it would be a good thing to keep hold of those positive thoughts going forward.

For people in business there are plenty of lessons to be learned from the athletes who performed so admirably for their country - Most important of all in my opinion was the positive mental attitude that emanated from Team GB. One of the reasons they all performed so magnificently was the sheer will to win.

There are plenty of ways in which we can draw inspiration for our victorious Olympians when it comes to succeeding in our professional lives and in the business world.

 

1. Set clear goals

Sports people have a clear target, to come out on top and beat their rivals. In business it is essential to have a goal, even if it is not based around competition or rivalry. One of the most dangerous mistakes to make in business is to not to have clearly defined goals and strategies to achieve them. Without having a focussed business plan in place that your key staff and management team are fully aware of, you run the risk of letting your business slip into terminal decline. Your management team are going to be key to that success and as well as being focussed and motivated, it is vital to ensure everyone is pulling together and working towards the same goals.

2. Dedication

Like anything in life, being successful as a sportsman or woman is all about application and preparation. If you want to do well you have to put in the hard work and have the right lifestyle. That means training hard, sacrificing certain things such as a ‘busy social life’ and eating the right foods. If you want to be a success in business you have to be prepared to go the extra mile and lead by example. Managers have to ensure that they know what they are talking about and put in the effort needed to be better than your rivals. Finally you should ensure your team are well prepared and equipped by giving them the right training. Doing well as a business is all about creating an atmosphere of success and ambition within the workplace.

3. Ditch the distractions

There are plenty of temptations in the world that can distract us from our goals. If you want to do really well then work with people who share the same values and goals. Athletes are very clear about the significance of task and purpose. Getting up at 5am to train makes sense when you understand the purpose is to compete and win at the highest level possible. In business many staff focus on their individual tasks without linking it to the overall purpose of the company. When task and purpose are aligned great things happen.

4. Learn from experience

Top athletes are constantly analysing their performance whether they win or lose. Modern sport is as much about science as personal dedication and there are always lessons to be learned from the victories as well as the defeats. The same goes for business people. Success is about adapting and developing and no one can afford to stand still. The great thing about business is that the profit margin never lies and you can tell almost straight away exactly what works for your company. It makes perfect sense to constantly monitor not only your personal progress but also the progress of your business. If something is clearly not working don’t be stubborn and either change your approach or accept defeat and move on to another project. The golden rule is ‘test and measure’ everything in your business.

5. Be resilient

Many people face defeat or disappointment at one stage or another in the course of their career, the trick is not to get downhearted or despondent. The top sports people are able to turn setbacks into comebacks. Top business people need to develop a thick skin and learn how to cope with failure. The most important thing of all is to learn from mistakes so that they are not repeated. Most of the top business leaders have had to deal with a venture that has failed or a business collapse. If something does go wrong, pick yourself up, dust yourself down and get on with it. In any profession or walk of life no one wants to spend time with the kind of people who fell sorry for themselves and blame everyone else for the things that have gone wrong.

6. Podium moments

Sport is all about the personal achievement, the joy of victory and that moment of standing on the podium is the pinnacle of any athlete’s career. That is the moment when all the hard work and commitment pays off. When things do go right make sure you take some time out to celebrate your success, preferably with the people who have helped to make it happen in the first place. There is nothing wrong with enjoying the moment but it is equally important not to wallow in the glory for too long. Many of the best businesses are constantly moving forward and all great competitors are constantly setting themselves new targets and goals. Enjoy the taste of success and then get on with the job of aiming for the next victory or personal milestone. I wish you every success and many Podium moments.

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