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This week’s focus: The Rio Olympic Games will be officially launched this evening. The Games are taking place at perhaps one of the lowest ebbs in the history of the Olympic movement. The continuing drug scandals affecting athletics and other sports, the reportedly poor preparation of some of the facilities, the ongoing political situation in Brazil and the threat from the Zika virus are all having an adverse effect on people’s belief in these Games.

Yet, within a few days we will all be hooked on the competition and will find ourselves screaming at the TV as we cheer on our favourite athletes. At London 2012, for instance I didn’t just cheer Mo Farah and Jessica Ennis-Hill to their gold medals, I found myself compelled to scream out support for weightlifters, canoeists, shooters and competitors from other sports I never ever watch. Despite all the doubts and fears about the Games, our respect and admiration for the athletes with the talent and determination to compete and strive to achieve their goals will win through.

I currently have a couple of clients who are going through big levels of change. As with Rio, it is easy for managers and colleagues to become fixated on the risks, fears and doubts about the actions they’re taking and their ability to win through. But, in both instances, I can already see real, tangible improvements. It’s critical that the leaders of these organisations help their people identify and celebrate these improvements – just as we will all soon be celebrating the efforts of our Olympic athletes – and keeping everyone’s focus on the future benefits of the changes.

What steps are you taking to build Olympian levels of belief in your business, keep your people’s focus on achieving your organisation’s future goals and objectives, and to help them avoid becoming fixated on today’s problems and fears?

Off the record: Rio by Mike Nesmith

I’m hearing the light from the window

I’m seeing the sight of the sea

My feet have come loose from their moorings

I’m feeling quite wonderfully free

© Stuart Cross 2016. All rights reserved.