I trust you enjoyed the Olympics as much as we did here at Diamond, and are looking forward to the Para Olympics too. It’s such an inspiration watching these athletes – and there are great lessons to be learned - not only for being in the peak of physical fitness but for all types of goal setting.
Here are the top 10 tips we have gleaned from the Olympians this year.
1. Commit wholly – every ounce of effort of the Olympians being is focused on these games. One of my favourite books, ‘Will it Make The Boat Go Faster’, is all about the success of the eight man rowing team in Sydney – and that one goal for four years. They asked themselves every day - will what I do today to make the boat go faster? If the answer was yes it would, then they did that thing. If it was no, then they didn’t. 100% commitment to that one goal.
2. Recruit a star team – for many events it is a team effort – and the above book talks about the importance of an equally focused, dedicated and matched in skills team. Cycling, rowing and indeed in your business, you need star players that are matched in equal and complementary ways to win gold.
3. Get support – there is a LOT of support for our Olympians – from their families to coaches to the rest of Team GB. Nobody achieves great things alone – so seek great advisers and coaches to maximise your chances of success.
4. Accept the sacrifices - everyone I have heard interviewed has spoken repeatedly about the sacrifices they have had to make – from the gluten and lactose free diet of our Bryony Page, the silver medal winning trampolinist, to the families such as the Peaty’s, who have got up at 4.00 am for years to take kids like Adam to swimming before school. Success = sacrifice.
5. Have a strategy – it’s no longer good enough to be good enough – you have to have a plan to win – a defined strategy of what you will do when and what happens if stuff goes wrong. You can bet your bottom dollar Chris Frome and the British Cycling team that will support his bid for historic gold (I am writing this on August 15th so we don’t know yet!) and to be the first man to hold the Tour de France title and win the Olympics – have a metre by metre strategy and team plan mapped out. Know your goal, create the plan to get there then……
6. Work your plan – from cycling to swimming, it’s all about not getting het up about your competition but to run your own race, with your own strategy. Bradley Wiggins said after his team won gold that they just had to ‘work their plan’ – regardless of what the opposition was doing.
7. Get up when you fall down – from Mo Farah’s heroic come back from his trip in his 10000m to Samir Ait’s horrific leg break, with an automatic vow of ‘I’ll be back’ within hours of being released from hospital - these people are not going to let a fall or accident deter them. Get up, race on, and run harder to catch up!
8. Believe – Usain Bolt KNOWS he’s the best. He believes it from the bottom of his heart and he knows he will win. To be a winner you need beyond anything else to absolutely believe you will win.
9. Look towards the finish line – there’s a great saying by Michael Phelps – ‘Winners focus on winning, losers focus on winners’. Don’t be distracted by those around you –look forward, to the finish, to your victory.
10. Celebrate success – from Tom Daly’s exuberance to the British Cycling team’s Gold Sunny celebrations – when you have worked hard and achieved that big goal then celebrate that success.
Huge congratulations to all Team GB – you have done us proud. And we can’t wait for the inspiration of the Paralympics which starts September 7th to the 18th. GO TEAM GB!!!