Monday, July 17, 2006

 

Soccer world cup: some lessons to learn

I am happy to be back to blogging after one month. Before I jump to sharing practical workdays, I would like to share some experiences from the soccer world cup in Germany, as it constitutes a special world of work in its own. Indeed, Germany 2006 has been not only a great time for entertainment but also a learning experience on success, competition, teamwork, passion, etc at both personal and corporate levels.

Over what was happening in the twelve German stadiums, many people were given an opportunity to voice their opinions. Three people attracted my attention by the way they related the world cup event to their careers, life, cultures and opinions: Bill Clinton, Kofi Annan, and the Ivorian president Laurent Bagbo.

For Bagbo, probably sending a political message to French he accuse of over doing in his country’s affairs, Italy has proved to be an established and respectful soccer team in Europ. Maybe in a political message to Bush’ zeal in the fight against terrorism, Clinton said: “sometimes defense is better than offence”.

Our very own African brother, the UN general secretary Kofi Annan probably had one of the most inspiring words for this world cup:
Soccer or sport in general has proved one more time its potential to induce love, peace, forgiveness, and to a certain extent development.

By the time the world is going to watch the first-ever African organized world cup, my wish is to see people being really mobilized to fight corruption, hunger, and unfair trade with the very same spirit and enthusiasm we saw in Germany. Would African people, led by civil society organizations, take a stance and start issuing yellow and red cards to politicians.

For wits WOW 2006 team, should we also learn passion from the players and have the same focus as Italian defenders not to commit the fatal mistake, should we also have that killer instinct of German strikers to always handle our tasks with tact and precision. There is a lot to learn from the career path of a soccer player given that this is the rare careers where workers, I mean players, achieve a lot in their young age and retire so young, mostly in their early thirties! We should not forget that despite their personal skills, soccer players work hard to be part of the national squad (23 players only). They also work had to be part of the fifteen for each game. They even work harder to fit in each game. So far, Wits Interns have good times and I hope all of us will fit in their host organizations or get something for long-term careers.


Cyrille

Comments:
Hi Cyrille

I'm having a wake-up, a revelation-type experience right now, right after having read your post.

I'm disinterested in sport. Huge money for what?

But your post and especially your inclusion of Annan's words has me thinking. Thanks for the perspective. And the meaty metaphors.

Best, Lesley
 
I am happy to hear that Lesley!
 
I wish that our education system concentrated a bit more on teamwork
Kay
 
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