Every couple of years, the world’s best athletes come together from all over the globe to participate in the Olympics. The frequency of the Games promotes an evolutionary process, where new sports heroes are identified, and new and different events added to the two-week extravaganza.
Many times the up-and-coming athletes and forms of competition work hand-in-hand. Events like the Ski Halfpipe, Snowboard Slopestyle, Team Figure Skating and Luge Team Relay are new at the Winter Olympics we’re witnessing right now in Sochi, and have come about because athletes have pioneered and grown them to the globally-popular levels that justify their inclusion in the Games.
In this way, the most passionate and talented performers in more mainstream sports like skiing, snowboarding, figure skating and luge are redefining their sports, and the Olympics. But at the same time they are forced to refresh or update their own skills and abilities to excel at these new events.
These athletes operate in a way job seekers and working professionals should emulate.
Once upon a time, David Wise – the first-ever gold medalist in the men’s Ski Halfpipe – was just a downhill or freestyle skiier, working to perfect his fundamental craft. But over time as the sport changed, he adjusted his training and refreshed his skills along with it, until he topped the podium in Sochi as the best in the world earlier this week.
Too many of us as candidates or employees simply go with the flow, moving complacently through our career. More people need to act as Olympians do, and acknowledge the changing landscape of their chosen profession or specialty and adjust and evolve along with it – in a way that benefits their industry or discipline, and also makes them more attractive to potential employers.
It might mean more work to “change your game” over time, but in the long run, like USA medalists Wise, Jamie Anderson (women’s snowboad slopestyle), Sage Kotsenburg (men’s snowboard slopestyle) and the figure skating team have proven, a commitment to constanly redefine yourself can reap major rewards.
Find your way to the podium. Commit to career evolution…and then go for the gold!
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