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Be a Champion?

March 9th, 2009 132 comments

Currently I live equidistant between the main campuses of Harvard and MIT; needless to say there is a high IQ index and one is easily humbled. But over the last two or three weeks I have become preoccupied with the idea of champions.

A few weeks back I was in one of my favorite coffee shops and I overheard a small group talking. It was obvious this group was meeting for the first time, as they were making introductions and detailing a shopping list of their skills and assets. One of the introductions, however, caught me off gaurd.

“Hi, my name is [fill-in-the-blank], and I am a champion project manager

I immediately began thinking about this phrase, wondering what it meant to be a champion. The blogosphere and twitter are full of titles like professional, expert, guru, ninja, etc. Everyone tries to come up with the catchy, trendy title; but what do they mean? What does it mean to be more than an expert? What does it mean to be a champion?

With all of these question racing in my head a grabbed out a piece of paper and started writing down some of the characteristics of a champion.

The Characteristics of a Champion:

  1. Champions are not defined in a moment. Champions are defined through a history of excellence; champions rise through a journey.
  2. Being a champion does not mean perfection; plenty of champions screw up. A champion comes back from a mistake stronger and more determined. A champion comes out on top.
  3. Champions are not self-proclaimed. A champion is given their title by a group of their peers, colleagues, or even competition.
  4. Champions are not permanent and require self-improvement. A champion is always challenged and never stops learning or growing.

Here is a shortlist of some people I consider champions. I have a learned a lot from every person on this list, and if I haven’t met you, I look forward to thanking you in person some day.

*Sorry, I couldn’t settle on one social media champion. Maybe Laura and Chris will just have to battle it out?

What are your ideas of a champion?

Who are your champions?

(Please comment below)

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