I watch the ways athletes celebrate success and winning and wonder if winning is enough. Can we focus on the goal, struggle to the top of the mountain, win the game however one wants to define it and then celebrate? Is success and continued success enough?
There are many athletes as well as corporate warriors that struggle, fight, and work their way to the best of their game. There are some universal measures of corporate success. The titles, power, participation in decision making at the most senior levels, rumors of pay packages well into the seven digits, and of course the cars with drivers. I recently met one who appeared to have it all and without much fanfare, walked away. In talking to him about history he tells of a different story. It is a story that I find compelling and applicable to my life and others.
The game was in hand. He knew how to win and was winning but that wasn’t enough. Moving progressively at the right times from one City firm to another he reached the pinnacle of power. His budget was measured in billions, people reporting to him in thousands, and his decision making contribution was focused right at the top level. While I don’t have all the specifics the round details and rumors validate his winning on all fronts! Ruthless execution was his first name. Winning was his second. Nobody was really sure what his last name was and many still do not know.
It is a shame really. Winning wasn’t his goal, he wanted something more. The something was the ability to demonstrate his caring and insight in developing the talents in others. He wanted to be a coach of coaches. That was actually his last name, compassion. He cared and cares more about the individuals than he does about his own success.
I wonder what would be enough for me.
“A little later Jesus found him in the Temple and said, ‘You look wonderful! You're well! Don't return to a sinning life or something worse might happen.’” (John 5.14)