One of the weekend highlights (aside from the elusive British sunshine) was the Borlase Grammar School Rowing Club annual dinner. Recognizing excellence (joint second in the medal table at the National School Championships this year), and laughing at the failings along the way.
The highlight of that event was the keynote by the Olympian whose medal winning career spanned more years than Steve Redgrave – Greg Searle MBE. Like a 2000 meter rowing race or a two decade long athletic career, life is not a sprint, and Searle’s distinctive achievements lend some superb insights. But my favourite, was his comment on balance which lies at the heart of the Leader/Manager duality…
- “Am I going hard enough or am I going too hard? It’s finding that balance. You want to give it your all, but you have to make it to the finish line.”
Leaders give it their all; Managers finish the race. Both together get to the medal stand.
He also exhibited his own heartfelt embrace of failure. His presentation was packed with gems from not just his uniquely successful sporting career, but also a very human odyssey he went through in self-awareness and personal (and team) excellence). He spent as more time talking about his failings than his world leading successes.
- “On the medal stand I wanted to throw that bronze medal in the water, but by Christmas is was a treasured possession.”