We have one life to run the best race set before us. Our potential to achieve is intended for us to first learn what our own best race is by understanding the key talents, strengths, motivation, passion, and creativity that live within us. How we fuse all of these intangible attributes into becoming worthy outcomes we desire from this life is an art. When we infuse this potential and partner with others who care deeply about what matters, life becomes more meaningful and the outcomes are even more remarkable for everyone.
Whose race are we running?
Is it your race or mine or are we racing our own race, together? As leaders, when we deny ourselves the benefit of reflection becoming aware of our actions and the impact they have on others, if we’re not careful, we may find ourselves slipping into the trap of racing someone else’s race, the boss’s race, a competitor’s race, that’s the way we’ve always done it race and in the end we lose a real sense of our beings. Eventually our workplaces lose something unique too. Through reflection we find the freedom to show up as we truly are and no longer are reactionary to issues. The safe space of reflection that we extend to ourselves and others helps us to discern what is realistically within our control and what lies on the fringes.
The best races are when the best possible outcomes can be pursued and achieved. Discovering first what our own best race is with authenticity and ingenuity, then determining what the best race of others who choose to join us in the pursuit will become. When we acquire and retain the right people in our workplace, forming a group or a team aligned with each of our best races toward a shared purpose, everyone wins through generously giving our unique contributions the very best we have to offer. It is this pursuit of excellence we expand our possibilities of reaching the next level.
Joseph Riddick “Rick” Hendrick III, founder, chairman and chief executive officer of Hendrick Motorsports knows precisely the power of running the best race, together. Born and raised on a small farm south of Richmond, VA near the border of North Carolina, Rick learned the value of family, hard work, sheer determination and developed a passion for automobiles. His wise father, “Pappa Joe”, helped to nurture his passion. At the young age of 14, Rick entered the world of auto racing, winning titles with Chevy vehicles he had built himself. Rather than pursue a career playing professional baseball, he followed his other passion and eventually invested in his first Chevy franchise at the age of 26. His hard work, dedication and influence eventually set his dealership apart as a regional profit center. Rick’s early success set the course for his life, and many others that would join him in the race. Today, Mr. Hendrick owns more than 90 franchises and employs over 6,700 employees across 11 states.
Running deep in the life of this founder are distinct qualities of a leader that brings forth the best talent, passion, skills and innovation. Guided by uncompromising family values, Mr. Hendrick has proven that he can compete in an industry known for its competitiveness and a natural drive toward “me first”. Mr. Hendrick’s passion for people and excellence has led to the premiere operations of Hendrick Motorsports; garnering a NASCAR record of 13 owner championships of 14 overall.
Hendrick Motorsports, a world-class environment and franchise is known for heralding NASCAR superstars like Dale Earnhardt, Jr. #88, Jeff Gordon #24, Jimmy Johnson #48 and Mark Martin #5. Mr. Hendrick’s vision and personal investment in helping each individual race car driver become a superstar has created a powerhouse where success is defined and attained only by helping other drivers succeed in the process. You don’t have to be a fan of NASCAR to appreciate the values, accountability, stewardship, and camaraderie found in this business enterprise. Each of the drivers while competitors with one another, ensure that on race day they’re on the track helping one another get to the front of the race. It’s clearly understood that if two of them get to the front, then they will compete honorably and race their best race. It is believed and lived among these race car drivers that when this condition exists, the real race has already been won because the checkered flag goes to the one who has earned it. Working together they race the best race and celebrate each other’s accomplishments.
Team is at the core of Hendrick Motorsports. When Jimmy Johnson was behind in points and found himself out of the running last year his pit crew chief Chad Knaus took action and proposed that Jimmy’s pit crew step up and help their fellow teammate Jeff Gordon and win the championship for the franchise. The team members adapted and focused on what really mattered for the organization. Commitment is at the center of Hendrick Motorsports. Committing to “together” is better.
Fortunately, if you should find your workplace challenged with leaders working independently and at cross-purposes with one another, you can foster the needed change by collaborating and developing your RPMs.
Consider where your best race is right now. Are you racing toward your highest goals, chasing a title, or someone else’s purpose? Are you running your best race, fulfilling your purpose? Does it need a tune-up or a new direction?
Are your vital partners, colleagues and alliances, running their best race? Have you defined who the key people are that are vital to your success in the next year or two? How are their best races similar or different from yours?
How might you collaborate better with those on a similar race track and potentially build breakthrough partnerships?
What are some of the best races that would align with your desired potential outcomes? How do these potential outcomes drive your internal motivation? How might you infuse these races together? What might that look like?
What can you do to propel your dreams, to get where you want to be? One life filled with many dreams. That’s all we’re given. What is it that you want to do? Are you doing it? What are the dreams of your workplace? Are they aligned? If not, what is holding you back from realizing your full potential? Outline the obstacles that are in the way and make the commitment to overcome them.
We’re grateful to receive your private messages and emails and gladly invite you to continue with your feedback. Let us know how we can help you race your best race. Together we can put the words to your workplace dreams, to your race, and outline the strategic initiatives to enable you and your leaders to run the race of your life.
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©2011 All rights reserved. Judy White, SPHR, GPHR, HCS is the founder and president of The Infusion Group™. A trusted partner in creating new possibilities in workplace culture design and talent management to have a meaningful impact on people, businesses, and society. How may we help you? For more information, please click here.
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