Isn’t it amazing how tragedy can bring out the best in people? I think it’s one of life’s greatest ironies. Life’s worst elicits humanity’s best. People kick into “crisis mode” and exhibit extraordinary levels of kindness and generosity.
We’ve seen plenty of examples of this during the COVID-19 pandemic: businessmen donating their private planes to transport supplies and essential personnel, companies reconfiguring their factories to produce medical supplies, landlords suspending the rent of furloughed workers, students creating homemade face masks for nursing homes, and so forth.
I make a point to share every story of this nature I see on social media and comment, “Good teammate move!” Selfless acts of kindness cannot receive too much attention.
Crisis mode has a unique way of rallying the troops—at least in the beginning. But as the crisis drags on, the heightened levels of kindness, generosity, patience, and commitment inevitably wane.
I’ve written before about how remarkable everyone’s behavior was on September 12, 2001. People seemed a lot more patient than usual that day. Unfortunately,people weren’t nearly as kind and patient on October 12, 2001.
We see this same situation play out in the sports world. A team’s season will get off to a rocky start. They lose a few close games in the beginning of the year and everybody on the team shifts into crisis mode. Everybody is willing to do “whatever it takes” to find success. Overcoming the losses becomes an all-hands-on-deck affair.
But then the team loses a few more games. And then a few more. As the losing streak lengthens, the commitment of those team members who vowed to do “whatever it takes” gradually fades. People shift back into the ME Gear and begin prioritizing their individual interests over those of the team.
If void of a true commitment, crisis mode can turn out to be little more than a flash in the pan. The virtues that initially accompanied crisis mode become a fad. Good teammates don’t have a crisis mode. They are eternally kind and patient—and committed.
When a team finishes a season 3-15 but then turns it around the next season to go 15-3, without any influx of new talent or leadership, we wonder how they did it. The answer is quite simple: Their team was comprised of good teammates who had faith, believed in the process, and were committed to solving the problem. They stuck with it and kept grinding.
Crises test our resolve and our resilience. But more than anything, crises test our commitment to winning principles and winning methods.
When you feel your faith and commitment waning, ask yourself: Do I want to be a good teammate? If you do, then get back in the saddle and forge ahead with the belief that something good is coming.
I wish I had the space to list every example of the good teammate moves I’ve heard about during the COVID-19 pandemic. They are all worthy of recognition. If you hear of a good teammate move story, be sure to offer praise and share the news with others. These stories inspire us and refuel our spirit.
As always…Good teammates care. Good teammates share. Good teammates listen. Go be a good teammate.