Not First; Not Bad

08 Jul 2004|Jennifer Grey

The feeling of stress is palpable at Cheskin. July means performance reviews. Need I say more? We’re all busy looking back to see what we’ve accomplished and figuring out how to get better going forward. Wears me out.

Cheskin is at the top of our game. We’re selling more than ever. We have such good people they make the place sing. But during reviews, we inevitably self-assess using the harshest and most stringent criteria. Unless we get ranked #1, we feel inadequate and think we’re failing.

Last Sunday I watched Wimbledon. The mens’ final came down to #1 and #2 in the world. The first set was a beautiful thing for Andy Roddick. Then came the rain. Then came Roger Federer. Four sets and Roger Federer was the 2004 Wimbledon champion. Just like that. Andy Roddick became a ‘loser’.

Accepting his trophy, Andy spoke to the crowd. He was gracious. He was articulate. He was generous. He played his best and he lost that match. He wasn’t shy about being proud of his effort and he didn’t hide his disappointment about ‘losing’.

Now that’s a performance review. Roddick acknowledged his competition. He knew he’d done his best, yet still came up short. He felt good about how hard he’d trained and how his training got him to centre court. No doubt he left that match with all kinds of ideas about what to do better, how to train harder and how to achieve the #1 position. Room for celebration. Room for growth. Room to relax.

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