Thursday, 22 October 2015

Cymru am byth

By the time you read this, the defeat of Wales at the hands of South Africa in the rugby will be a fading memory. That much may be incontestable but what is also indisputable is this - the dignity with which the Welsh team took defeat will never be bettered!

I’m no expert when it comes to sport but, like most people, I’ve experienced enough of it to recognise true courage and valour. Both the captain and the coach for Wales refused to blame the result on injuries or new players coming in. That would have been the easy way in the raw moments of the post-match interview seconds after game. Instead, both men smiled at the camera and praised their team’s valiant efforts to the end.

From a business perspective, I think the point is that the defeat is seen as a temporary setback and the team spirit is not and never will be broken. What’s more the players in the team are completely trusted and will carry on repaying that trust with unswerving loyalty. On that basis, it will be possible to lose the battle maybe but still be fighting to win the war.

But of course all of this can be contrasted with the success of the Football Team who have qualified for a major tournament for the first time since 1958. Well done to them and I’m sure that will be a great occasion for the whole nation to rally round.

On a wider front I’m also going to link this event to business even though the connection may be slightly tenuous. My point is a simple one – Welsh business needs some of the spirit and dignity shown recently by Welsh sportsmen both on and off the pitch.

I’ve been involved in Welsh business for many years both as a Director and an adviser and I really feel the time is right to inject some passion into the fight. As a nation, Wales demonstrated pride and confidence in the future some years ago to involve major foreign investment into the A55 and M4 corridors – it needs to happen again! Blessed with entrepreneurial spirit and the drive to internationalize in the same way as the Celtic cousins in Ireland and Scotland, Wales needs to “put in the hard yards”. Take a leaf out of the book of the football or rugby team’s manual and train for a performance that takes you to the absolute limit.

As we can all see clearly from recent activities on those fabled pitches, when hope is alive and you are prepared to take on the world, anything is possible! I’m sure business will never get the same TV coverage as the heroes of the sporting world but the success can be every bit as sweet.

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