For me, life is too short to spend hours watching TV, so I catch the news in the evening, and occasionally watch a movie. That’s been the pattern for years until coverage of the Winter Olympics in Vancouver started.
There is something much more fascinating and compelling about sport at the Olympic level than at other major events. Is it because the athletes are striving for not only their personal glory, but also their country’s honour?
Is it because for many athletes it is the culmination of 4 or more years of dedication to a relentless training schedule, fighting injury and pain and often putting the rest of their lives on hold?
Or is it because of the publicity and media saturation? Or the sheer number of different events in a short space of time?
Whatever the reason, watching the events provides many valuable lessons for entrepreneurs.
Firstly the dedication and commitment to hours of training over a long period, for most of that time, with no certainty that they will qualify for their national team.
Without a clear goal and a vision of winning a medal, how many people will maintain that degree of commitment for years?
Contrast this with so many would-be Network and Internet Marketers who are unable to maintain that level of commitment to their business for even a few weeks or months.
Secondly, focus. Focusing during years of training, on only what is critical to achieveing the level of fitness and skill to put in a world class performance. Ignoring distractions.
At the start and during the event, being able to focus 100% on winning that medal, ignoring pain, the weather or fear of failure. Even to the extent of competing with 4 broken ribs as was the case with an athlete in the 15km ski event.
Thirdly, not relaxing for even a blink of an eye until that goal is achieved, how many races were won by a few hundredths of a second?
The difference between Gold medal and 5th place in the womens skeleton race was inches.
Many countries award cash bonuses to their medal winners, so a five hundredths of a second gap between Gold and Silver could cost the second place finisher up to $5000 depending on their National Olympic organisation’s generosity.
That works out to $6 million dollars a minute!
Of course, we understand that Olympians are competing for the achievement and honour, not the cash.
Just for a moment, look at that in terms of our businesses, if a few minutes of extra effort, or a few ounces of extra energy every hour could generate even a small fraction of that sort of return, would we make that extra phone call, spend more time improving our sales copy or perhaps write an extra blog post each week?
Makes you think doesn’t it?
Wishing you success in all your endeavours.