I had the opportunity to participate in a curling bonspiel several weeks ago as part of a friend’s 50th birthday celebration. By all accounts this was a “friendly” competition, but the way the tournament was organized, no winner would be determined by wins alone. To maximize your opportunity to win you also needed to win as many ends as possible and by as many points as possible. Bottom line, it was not enough to just win. To be the best you needed to both win and to dominate the competition.
Curling is an event where sportsmanship is an intricate component. I found myself sheepishly apologizing for ”running up the score” but I have always believed that” how you do anything is how you do everything” so I was not prepared to give anything less than my best effort. I had other team members relying on me to perform as well. I wanted to win, I wanted to dominate.
Having been involved in sports all my life, I never understood coaches who instructed players to take it easy on the competition when a game was well in hand. Having been on the losing side in many games I always found that tactic insulting and patronizing. Where is the life lesson in teaching children not to do their best? If sportsmanship is the issue then simply bench your best players and let the players that would typically ride the bench, have an opportunity to
I reflect on this curling event as it mirrors how I approach business. I always provide a client my best advice and their best financing solution. I want not only a financing solution for them, which would represent the win, but I want to save
them thousands of dollars, or the biggest win we can possibly achieve.
Others may argue that the purpose of life is not to win and that you will achieve more satisfaction from the pleasure you bring into other people’s lives, versus the pleasure you achieve from bettering them in
competition. Perhaps, but that sounds like “loser” talk to me. I bet legendary football coach Vince Lombardi would agree.