Winning it’s not everything, it’s the only thing?

Coaching - Succession- Financial Planning

Winning it’s not everything, it’s the only thing?

I have found myself wondering, in recent weeks, what my thought process would be if I was an executive in the sports complex at Penn State University, when emails about Jerry Sandusky’s activities arrived in my inbox. Would “winning” be the only thing?

Our society seems to easily confuse winning and losing with right and wrong. With our penchant to measure everything, perhaps winning and losing are just easier to measure. Perhaps it’s human nature to put sports legends, like UCLA Bruins coach Red Sanders who first coined the expression, on a pedestal and give more authority to their words than we should; whatever the reason winning seems to trump right in many arenas in our lives, from law courts to Olympic badminton courts.

One place where “right” holds its place seems to be with successful business families. These families typically teach values to each generation. Right is easier to measure when values provide the parameters. Successful families also encourage members to find their own path to fulfillment and winning is harder to measure when family members are following their own path. In families where personal fulfillment of individual members is the goal it’s not so easy to measure winning and losing, it is an “east/west” answer to a “north/south” question.

For successful business families, after financial security is established securing human and intellectual capital quickly gain importance. Family values become an underpinning of a member’s activities.

Prosperity, as I’ve noted before, is a broader term than wealth, it encompasses ideas of happiness and health, in Wikipedia “flourishing” is included in the definition. To achieve prosperity families need to pay attention to human and intellectual capital, they meet as a family on a regular basis, have open, respectful communication and often a family charter that defines values. When a family approaches life with a goal of prosperity for members, based on family values, the result is an understanding of right and wrong the word winning becomes redundant.