Scott Machado is a triathlete and marathon runner. He writes a periodic newsletter to inform fans of his progress and he gave me permission to share a portion of his latest with you. As you read Scott's description of the race, think about the strategies you use to interact with competitors in your field of endeavor.
As we reached the turn around, I began to pick up the pace. I began to look to the athletes ahead of me and use them as carrots. I would work to reach the athlete ahead of me and, once I did, look to the next one as my target. One by one, I was catching athletes.
At about mile nine, while still focusing on athletes ahead of me, I found myself with two runners who were able to match my pace. Now it was a race. Many thoughts ran through my mind, "Do I want to engage in this race?" and "This is what you train for and this is why you are here, to race, so go for it."
One of the two athletes began to push forward and the second followed. I dropped back. I was comfortable with this decision and felt that the race was not over. There where two miles left and, if I tried to match their pace at that point, I knew that I would not survive to the end.
My experience seemed to pay off. As I watched the second athlete, I noticed that he would follow the contours of the road instead of run a straight line through the curves. He was doing more work than I! Slowly, I was able to reel him in and finally caught him right before the big hill (the first athlete was far ahead by this point--he was just faster).
This race has a very steep hill about three-quarters of a mile before the finish. As we reached this hill, I let the other athlete go. Again, I was comfortable with this decision. I cannot explain it, but my instinct told me that this guy would try to surge on the hill and pay for it before the finish. I choose a moderate pace up the hill to save myself for the finish. Again, it worked! As the finish line drew near, I slowly drew closer to my competitor and, with about a quarter mile to go, I passed him. I then pushed myself to the brink of vomit to make sure that no more passes would take place and crossed the finish line ahead of him.
- Scott is clearly aware of his own strengths and doesn't allow the other runners to dictate the plan he had before the race began.
- He adapted to changes but did not toss out his initial plan when faced with a challenge.
- He pours it on at the finish, despite being ahead, to ensure no one else passes him.
Ask your leadership team to read Scott's story and take some time as a group to discuss similarities between his experience on the course and your approach to competition in the marketplace.
Scott is sponsored by WealthWise, LLC and Running Warehouse.
See you in the future,