Applying Olympian Ideals to your Channel Partner Programs
Today is July 27th, Opening day of the 30th Olympiad in London. For those of us in London 3 weeks of sporting excellence and major changes to normal day to day life, more tourists, more traffic, lots of police and a general awareness of difference.
Every four years the Olympics explodes into our lives and for 3 weeks the world become interested in a range of diverse sports that have a brief time on global view. Everyone recognises the sportsmen and women for their skills and dedication before we all go back to normal life after the splendour of the closing ceremony.
The Olympics coming to town creates excitement and change way outside our normal way of life. On Sunday 29th July I will attend the Beach Volleyball event in the center of London on Horseguards Parade, a historic site where we usually hold military parades on the Queens birthday.
The Olympic ideals of excellence, fair play, opportunity and competition are well known and embraced by thousands of competitors and even greater number of hopeful contenders in the run up to each Olympiad.
If you look at your channel programs what lessons can be learned from the Olympic ideals?
Firstly excellence, it is defined as a talent or quality which is unusually good and so surpasses ordinary standards. We all strive for it in all of our programs, excellence in funded activities, excellence in achieving goals, excellent partner relationships. The Olympics set standards for excellence to get into the competition and then every sport measures excellence through its own particular scoring system. Do our channel programs have simple methods of measuring excellence?
Secondly fair play, the Olympics give everyone the chance to compete for the prize of a gold medal, this year’s Olympics will be attended by teams from over 130 countries. Whilst the competitors may attend the games having been able to train in better conditions, may have better equipment or skills, when the starters gun is raised they all have the chance to compete. Do our channel programs all have the same inclusive approach?
Thirdly opportunity, the Olympics give competitors the opportunity to reach levels of performance and recognition that they would never have in any other area of sport. It’s not just about winning the medal, it’s about the chance, The Jamacian Bob Sleigh Team and Eddie “the Eagle” Edwards did not win medals but they took their opportunity and the world watched in awe. Sometimes people just need the chance to shine and show a level of determination that displays their qualities. Do our channel programs reflect this idea?
Finally competition, the Olympics are about people applying their skills and wits in competition to win the prize. This year we may see a man run 100 meters in under 9.5 seconds, a truly astounding feat. The race will be 8 people all trying to do the same thing and break a tape 100 meters in the distance. As they compete they will drive others in the race to perform better, competition can be collaborative as well as a combative. Do our channel programs encourage competition in all forms?
So, what’s the point of all this?
Our Channel Programs are built to bring the best out of our channel partners, like the Olympics they are built to deliver excellent performance by the competitors.
The Olympics are a long term commitment to performance on behalf of the competitor, who can say they do not want that from their partners?
The Olympics give the competitors the purpose and direction in a measureable way, that’s a pure program vision.
Finally, the participating (and of course the winning of a medal) give the competitor a huge sense of purpose and achievement, sounds like a great engagement tool.