It's hard to beat a person who never gives up. -- Babe Ruth
Since the early days of publishing View from Here I always had this habit of drafting updates that were external facing.
Client ABC Corp. won an award. Woot!
Our team member was recognized as a top 30/40/50 under 30/40/50. Yahoo!
Check out this amazing pizza dinner we took a client to in Chicago. Nom! Get in my bellay!
And if I'm being honest with you: there is nothing wrong with what we've been writing.
It was real.
It was a view into life at MKG.
It highlighted our heroes -- the clients whom we serve -- on a regular basis when they accomplished amazing things.
Again, nothing wrong with that at all. In fact I'm very fond of those View from Here updates!
This month I wanted to take a moment to share an experience that I had at the end of April that has stuck with me.
Meeting a Real Life Olympian
As a team, we had the pleasure of spending an hour (virtually!) with Lauren Gibbs of the US Olympic Bobsled team.
She shared her journey to the Olympics in Pyeongchang (Winter 2018), which included highlights such as:
- By her early 30's, she was driving a fast sports car and managing a team of 200+ sales reps as a Regional Sales Manager while happily living in Denver, Colorado
- On a whim, someone convinced her to attend first round tryouts for the US Olympic bobsled team in Colorado Springs. She had never even seen a bobsled before that day.
- Fast forward 3.5 years later, she was standing on the podium accepting a Silver medal as one of the top Bobsled athletes in the 2018 Olympic Games
Lauren was kind enough to share her journey, the high and low-lights, as well as answer any questions that we had as a group. She also shared an amazing sizzle reel video of their Silver medal winning run!
And that is where she said something that I wanted to share with you.
"Be So Good They Fight Over You"
One of our team members asked how Lauren went from being an Olympic team newbie to becoming the 2nd best bobsled team in the world at those Olympic games.
Specifically: How do you convince a sled Driver to pick you as their brake-woman?
Lauren's answer was simple.
Be so good that they fight over you.
As she shared with us, Lauren didn't know a single thing about bobsled before she went to the 1st round tryouts in Colorado.
She didn't have parents who were Olympics athletes or who trained her from a young age.
In place of these disadvantages, Lauren focused on:
- Accepting coaching, critiques and criticism as a chance to get better. If somebody wants to help you get better, accept their help. Let them coach you up to become that much better!
- Building on the first piece of advice: Never give up on continuing to get better!
And most importantly: Focus so intensely on becoming better than other people fight to have you on their sled.
According to Lauren, you don't need to convince people how good you are. Or politic your way to a top spot. Her path focused on becoming so good that every other sled driver fought to have her on their sled because they knew she was determined to win and could be trusted to do her job at an Olympic level.
Translating That For Us Non-Olympians
The advice -- Be so good they fight over you -- applies to any team.
It can be a business team. Sports team. Even a hobby.
Focus on becoming so good that folks fight to pick you for their team and, according to Lauren, everything will fall into place for you.
If you want to learn what life is like behind the scenes at the Olympics, you can chat with Lauren yourself by booking one of her virtual experiences on Air BnB. https://www.airbnb.com/experiences/1661397