In a split second your business legacy can be cast. Today I’m going to take a look at two professional footballers’ contrasting approaches to the game they play for a living. And perhaps we can learn a little about what, and how, we all communicate impacts on the way our professional lives are perceived?
Queens Park Rangers were relegated yesterday from the Premier League of English football. And media reports have focused on a couple of players, notably Jose Bosingwa, smirking as he left the pitch.
The report also allegedly reveals how the player is despised by fans and colleagues alike for an air of arrogance. But the smirking and apparent disinterest as the fans who pay his wages are distraught at their team’s demise has been roundly condemned.
In contrast there is a former professional footballer – now manager of Wycombe Wanderers – called Gareth Ainsworth. When a dismal Preston North End team were relegated to the lowest tier of English professional football in the 1980s, Ainsworth broke down in tears. He was completely inconsolable.
This is the same player who refused to leave the pitch after each game he played until he had physically walked around all four sides of the ground to clap the fans.
No North End fan will ever forget Ainsworth’s tears. He has made a similar impact wherever he has played. And was crying again this week!
The perception with Bosingwa is that it’s just a job to him. It’s a process. He gets up, plays a bit (he plays well enough to receive international honours – so quite well as it goes) then goes home. Enjoy trappings of wealth. Repeat on a daily basis.
With Ainsworth, the passion is the overriding memory. Every minute on the pitch counted. Every challenge was a matter of life or death. You just knew it was important to him.
Bosingwa is despised by QPR fans. And Ainsworth? To Preston North End fans (And ironically QPR fans – where he also enjoyed a successful stint!), Ainsworth is and always will be remembered as a legend. Because of how his all action approach to the game and much he obviously cared.
So how do you communicate? Is it just a job? Is communication with colleagues and customers just part of the daily process?
Or, is it your passion? Do you share your passion? Do people know you care? How?
Are you Bosingwa or are you Ainsworth?
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