Glory for one man, utter joy for a team
I have to confess to being rather emotional this morning. The reason? Watching Eliud Kipchoge achieving what seemed impossible, running a marathon in under two hours.
What a feat. It stretches the mind, imagining the physical commitment needed to run at 13 miles per hour for two hours.
Whilst I was watching him run with his country flag, celebrating with the delighted crowd, the thing that struck me most was the utter joy in every person on his team.
Kipchoge did not do this alone, he had a dedicated team of people to help him, from those behind the scenes to those who rang along side to help him keep the pace. They did it together. It will be Kipchoge who is remembered by name, who will be celebrated as "the first", but that did not seem to reduce the sense of achievement, then sense of elation that his team experienced. They will forever be the ones that helped him to get there, and to them, it didn't look like it mattered that their names will not be known.
An amazing display of true teamwork., from which I'm sure we can learn much. Do we truly rejoice in the success of those around us? Or do we feel a sense of envy that our name isn't known? Are we all committed to a clear, challenging goal that unites us? Do we celebrate together when we get there? What might we be capable of if we believed we could achieve the impossible together?
As a manager, it's so important to set an environment in which we encourage our teams to experience pride in the success of every member. We need every person to understand their role, and how they fit into the collective plan, to know how they might support others and to know how they contribute to the core objectives of the team and the business. We need to see the potential in those around us, and work to get rid of everything that gets in their way.
Kipchoge said "no human is limited" and we need to approach our teams with that same attitude.
It has been an emotional morning. What a lesson.