All eyes will be on Brazil in just a few days, as the world's top athletes join together in Rio for the 2016 Summer Olympics. What happens when daytime television of the XXXI Games begins to take the attention of your employees? Do employers need to step in and pull the plug on the office television?
Absolutely not! In fact, I would argue that the Olympics is good for employee productivity and raising an employee's work ethic. The fierce competition, camaraderie, team work, challenges, raising your game to the highest level and so much more, hold some great lessons for your employees.
Here are 10 reasons why every employer should encourage their employees to watch the Olympics.
1. Employees will learn that winning isn't everything, but wanting to win is. Olympians have a "whatever it takes" attitude. They've made the decision to pay any price and bear any burden in the name of victory.
2. Employees will learn that Olympic athletes embrace conflict for growth. When most people run into an obstacle, they seek escape. Olympic athletes have a plan to push forward when this happens and learn all they can from the challenges they face. They know facing adversity is part of being successful.
3. Employees will learn that Olympic athletes are held accountable on so many levels. One of the biggest problems is that most people have no means of accountability or a support system in place when it comes to what they're trying to accomplish.
4. Employees will learn that Olympic athletes are learning machines. They spend hours practicing, studying their competitors, watching videos of their performances and session after session with their coaches and mentors. If your employees adopted just a fraction of an Olympian's work ethic, the results they could achieve would be endless.
5. Employees will learn Olympic champions know very good is bad. For the average employee, to be classified as very good is something to be proud of. For the great ones, it's an insult.
6. Employees will learn Olympic athletes make "do or die" commitments. When most people are burned out from the battle, Olympians are just getting warmed up. It's not that they don't fatigue; but their commitment to their dream of winning the gold keeps them going.
7. Employees will learn Olympic athletes are consistently great. The reason they are so consistent is because their actions are congruent with their thought processes. They have a very clear mental picture of what they want, why they want it and how to move closer to their target objective.
8. Employees will learn Olympians are coachable. Most people will only accept the amount of coaching their egos will allow. Champions like Olympic athletes are well known for being the most open to world-class coaching. The bigger the champion, the more open-minded they are.
9. Employees will learn Olympians compartmentalize their emotions. In other words, they have the ability to put aside anything else going on at that very moment, and focus only on the task in front of them.
10. Employees will learn Olympians think big. Ask most people what they're thinking at any given time, and you might be surprised to learn how many think about just getting by. That's called selling yourself short. Olympians are fearless and focused on manifesting their ultimate dream of bringing home the gold.
If you're a manager planning on letting your employees watch the Olympics during business operating hours, definitely do. If you weren't considering it, you should. That's not to say you need to dedicate hours or days to it to the point of causing a workplace distraction, but keep the TV tuned to the Olympics in the break room, or keep it on in the background and let your employees take it in. It might just help your staff achieve gold medal accomplishments in their jobs.