Two tennis teams at Punahou School in Honolulu illustrate the value of good communication between teammates. There was a gold team and a blue team. The gold team was made up of the superstar tennis players. They were students who had taken lessons all their lives. They had the latest equipment and great outfits. Individually each member had beautiful strokes.
The blue team was made up of the students who enjoyed the game but who saw it as more of a pastime. They were enthusiastic about tennis, but they hadn’t devoted a lot of energy to it. They neither had the skills nor the elaborate equipment that the gold team had.
As the semester progressed, the blue team members always stayed to cheer on their teammates. Even though they were losing their matches, they would bring snacks and water and stay to encourage their teammates until the very last point was played. On the other hand, the gold team members would leave as soon as their individual matches were over.
In the middle of the semester something turned around and in the end the blue team beat the gold team. Even though as individuals the blues were not the top players, their cohesiveness and teamwork made it possible for them to take the trophy.
This story is from my book, To Lead is to Serve.
Bertrand Russell said, “The only thing that will redeem humankind is cooperation.” What do you think?