World Cup 2014
Is it any wonder that we have an entire collection of articles focused on what friends and many at the office call ‘The Greatest Show on Earth’? Browsing photos of friends beaming back from their stadium seats in Brazil, I can almost feel the energy and invigorating roar of the crowd! I love watching things live (admittedly more of a performance art and musical nature) and cheering on my school or country.
In recent years, I have been persuaded to follow several basketball leagues in the Klang Valley and am honestly beginning to understand the depth and madness of World Cup fever. It’s interesting to see the way individuals behave in team sports and, not unlike driving, reveal their true colours. You see the many traits that our writers speak of in their stories in this World Cup 2014 issue – both positive and negative (see Bite-Gate).
Bye Five! A look at how and why some of the top teams touted to go far in the World Cup, just failed to hit the mark – by Philip Rishen.
Behind the Grass: A tribute to the unsung heroes of football – by Vinesh Naidu.
Movie Wisdom: Featuring “Remember the Titans” and storming past norming in team development – by Yasir Osman.
Where to Start?
Of the leadership lessons that have been identified through football (and there are many!), I would like to highlight these as they apply quite seamlessly to the workplace and to life:
“Ensure focus and keep your eye on the ball. Brazil lost it for three minutes and the dream of millions went to shreds” – Roshan Thiran
No matter how we plan and strategise, ‘life can throw you a curve ball’ and we need to focus all the lessons we learned, grounded on our values, to make a split-second life-altering decisions.
“Defeatists see tragedy, champions see a challenge” – Jack Chua (on Dixie Dean)
Pressure and uncertainty are a part of life and we need to learn to manage it.
“You can still win when you lose” – Roshan Thiran
Win by giving your best, showing your authenticity and sticking to sportsmanship behaviour – especially when you are a role model to future generations.
“It’s the name on the front of the jersey that matters most, not the back” – Avinash Kumar Manoharan
Though the value of and need for teamwork has been inculcated since young, it appears easy to forget or to apply in all aspects of life. For one, not being truly aligned with a company’s vision and mission certainly sets the scene for ineffective teams with disastrous results.
“Victory will not last without change” – Avinash Kumar Manoharan
I’m obliged to say that rest is important (my public health roots are strong), but resting on your laurels (pun intended, albeit somewhat lame) and not learning or adapting continuously may soon have one out of the game altogether.
And I leave you with this: “We need to revisit what success is and learn to embrace the present, and forget about future anxieties. The real winners are those who celebrate and enjoy every moment of life.”
Have a fantastic day!