The 2008 Olympic Games have featured many amazing
athletes. Records have been shattered
and dreams achieved during the first half of the games. We are certain to
witness more incredible performances before the closing ceremonies. Trainers,
equipment, massages and world class facilities would undoubtedly improve
employee performance in your workplace.
But there are simpler, basic lessons that all managers and business
owners can take away from the Olympics and apply to improve results.
them. They don’t keep this plan a
secret. Coaches, trainers, support staff
and teammates all know the goals. The official
website of The Beijing 2008 Olympic Games includes an Olympic Personal Trainer
section. Athletes describe training tips
on this page in response to a list of questions. Listen to the interviews and you will hear
about priorities, goals and sticking to a plan.
Canadian runner, Charmaine Crooks, advises that you be prepared and
“learn how to manage small challenges along the way.” Michael Phelps did not simply announce that he intended to
win 8 gold medals and jump into the pool.
He employed a very detailed plan and worked closely with his coach,
trainers and teammates to achieve his goal. Usain Bolt had a strategy to win
before the starting gun fired for the 100 meter race. Age and experience may change the content of
training but not the basic formula.
Shawn Johnson at 16 and the much publicized Dara Torres at 41 used
specific steps in very different sports and circumstances.
the goals are for the organization or their own department. A VP of Human Resources once told me he could
not identify company goals during a meeting about the redesign of their
performance appraisal process. I was shocked and really concerned about the success
of the project. If the VP of HR did not know the goals how could anyone measure
results? One week after this meeting it was announced that the company was
under a federal investigation for a series of potential misdeeds. This was one
instance where the lack of goals was understandable. The HR VP had already seen
the potential demise of the company. Use the inspiration of the Olympic Games to set and
communicate clear goals in your workplace.
If you already have great goals make certain that employees know what
they are. This practice is just as important during business booms as lean
periods. Employees can help make adjustments and overcome obstacles along the
way. Celebrate successes and involve your team in setting the standards for