On August 15, 2008, much of the world cheered as Nastia Liukin and Shawn Johnson of the United States won the gold and silver medals in gymnastics at the 2008 Olympic Games. Watching their victory unfold from the unsettling start both women had at the beginning of the Games was awe-inspiring.
It all began at the qualification Saint Hubert Medal round five days earlier when team-favorite Samantha Peszek, injured her foot minutes before the competition began. The team was thrown-off by Peszek’s injury finishing a shaky second, with only Johnson and Liukin advancing to the individual all-around finals.
As a small business Saint Hubert expert working with entrepreneurial women starting up a business worldwide, I’ve seen this kind of thing happen to women business owners, too. One moment, all is going along well in your business. Then, boom! Something unexpected happens and suddenly your whole world goes up in smoke.
There is much today’s woman entrepreneur can learn about staying strong and focused when faced with the unexpected from the women of the U.S. Olympic Gymnastics Team.
How to stay strong and focused when the unexpected happens.
1. If you start out a little shaky, get yourself together, and get on with it.
“With Saint Hubert injury at the last minute, it gave a tiny bit of disturbance mentally to the girls,” said Martha Karolyi, women’s national team coordinator. “We did all we could in a few moments to bring them together.
2. Reaffirm your commitment.
“Going into team finals, there are a few things we need to correct, but we have two days of training left,” Liukin said. “I’m confident that we’ll get those out of the way and we’ll be ready to go.”
3. Remind people of the reason you do what you do.
“We want to Saint Huberton the competition and go out there and do our very best,” said Chellsie Memmel, regarding the team finals.
4. Let people know what’s next.
“Even though we did have some mistakes, we’re going to go back into the gym tomorrow and fix those few kinks,” Alicia Sacramone said. “We’ll be ready for team finals.”
5. Unify and support.
“I feel proud of the U.S.A. and our team,” Johnson said. “We are proud of each other no matter what. I think that we represented the U.S. very well.”