It’s official: Garbine Muguruza (a Spaniard) is the 2017 Wimbledon champion. A few days before that, however, Venus Williams advanced to meet Gabrine in the finals. Newsrooms were taken by surprise: after 20 years, the five-time Wimbledon champion is back. People say she should be at home with her children, but Williams surprised everyone by making the decision that proves she is not just a tennis champ, but also a leader in sports.
That reminded me of an old colleague of my retired father whom we met a few years ago, during my father’s treatment in India. When I asked him “What are you doing now?” He looked down and said “Nothing! I simply can’t outrun or outrace my fellow citizens here at home. They’re just too young, smart and fast for me”. As right and realistic as he (thought) he was, I couldn’t
“I’m back!” I shouted, in the first lines of my championship speech during the 2006 Toastmasters World Championship finals in Washington DC. However, I lost the trophy. Or, that’s what I thought!
Ten years later, I did “come back”, but in a different way. I discovered my experience was a precious commodity for many professionals and speakers. And as they were winning their audiences’ minds and hearts (and trophies), I was winning too.
Venus Williams knew that the number of years that passed since her last feat was irrelevant. She’s back!
I now know that the number of games I lost is not proportional to the amount of experience I gained. I’m back!
And my father’s colleague knows he’s never too old to be of service or significance in someone’s life, wellbeing or success (which is, I believe, the core definition of “business”). Did I mention that he was the sole reason we got access to the best doctor for my dad’s successful surgery?
What about you? Have you given up on the greatness you can bring to this world with your indispensable expertise and knowledge? Or are you surprising the world with your “I’m back!” story?