This week’s focus: I’m now completely caught up with the Olympics – from the opening ceremony, through to the pool, cycling, gymnastics, weightlifting and even “The Sculling Sloth”, the rower from Niger who finished over a minute behind the rest of the field.

Having seen much of the coverage I can now safely conclude that the most thankless task in Olympic sport is that of the handball goalkeeper. Their main role, as I understand it, is to pick the ball out of the net 40 times each match, unless, by some streak of luck, the ball, which is thrown from a few yards away at 70 mph, smacks into their body or face, at which stage the commentator announces, “What a save!

It’s easy to eulogize your stars and top talent, but all organisations need their equivalent of handball goalkeepers, the people who are willing, almost unseen, to carry out the thankless tasks.

Who has the responsibility for the most thankless task in your business and how can you recognise their contribution to your organisation’s success?

Off The Record: Heroes by David Bowie

Though nothing, nothing will keep us together

We can beat them, forever and ever

Oh, we can be heroes just for one day

© Stuart Cross 2012. All rights reserved.