As a culture we often say that customer satisfaction is the truest path toward our team goals, that delivering a better quality of life to others gives true meaning to our own lives. This morning I reflected on my personal contribution toward this vision. I wrote down how I’ve contributed to and/or derailed progress as a team member. Most importantly, I thought about what I can do to improve my contribution. While doing this, an email buzzed across my screen. It included an excerpt from a speech by Theodore Roosevelt that clearly sums up the mindset needed to truly impact the world.
The Man in the Arena
It is not the critic who counts; not he man who points out how the strong man stumbles, or where the doer of deeds could have done them better. The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena, whose face is marred by dust and sweat and blood; who strives valiantly; who errs, who comes short again and again, because there is no effort without error and shortcoming; but who does actually strive to do the deeds; who knows great enthusiasms, the great devotions, who spends himself in a worthy cause; who at the best knows in the end the triumph of high achievement, and who at the worst, if he fails, at least fails while daring greatly, so that his place shall never be with those cold and timid souls who neither know victory nor defeat.
Theodore RooseveltI read this and then asked myself a completely different set of questions. Am I in the arena or watching the strong stumble from the stands? Do I strive valiantly toward goals and remain undefeated in the face of failure? Do I do it every day for the right cause? Is this cause impactful enough that if I fail, I did it while daring greatly? Because if I am doing these things…I won’t ever fail. None of us will. Have a fantastic week, team.