Paul McVeigh




Oct 14


TalkSPORT Live duties on Monday night saw me enthralled at the style of football played by Chelsea as they sauntered their way to a convincing 3-1 win at Burnley.

The sort of display that Chelsea will be expected to deliver throughout this season. Their Summer investments of Cesc Fabregas and Diego Costa for around £60 Million a statement of intent that shows they are not only expecting to win the Premier League title this season but to do so in spectacular style.

That display showed that they are very capable of doing that.

Enormous expectations at Chelsea; ones that leave no room for failure. Because for them this season is all or nothing; they either win the title or they will regard the whole campaign as having been one of failure. Finishing second isn’t good enough. Massive expectations. But not unique to football.




Take Tesco for example. In April 2014 it was reported that their pre-tax profits were down 6.9% to ‘just’ £3.05 billion for the financial year up to February 22nd, the company admitting that their performance was “not where we had planned to be.”

Football club or supermarket giant, the message is the same…’we don’t believe in finishing second’.


How do two differing businesses cope with such high expectations? And, as a motivational speaker, how could you help make a difference, what could you offer; what would my message be to the big suits at Tesco if I was asked to be a keynote speaker at one of their conferences?

I think the most important message I would want to put across to them is that there is no such thing as failure, only feedback.

Feedback that emphasises that failure, at whatever level you define it is only an issue if you don’t know how to deal with it. To understand it, accept that it is a part of life and, once you have done that, to develop a strategy for dealing with it.

As Michael Jordan, one of, if not, the most brilliant player ever to set foot on a basketball court once said, “I’ve missed more than 9000 shots in my career. I’ve lost almost 300 games. Twenty-six times, I’ve been trusted to take the game winning shot and missed. I’ve failed over and over and over again in my life. And that is why I succeed”.

He failed in order to succeed.

That’s the message I’d give to those suits at Tesco.

That in their eyes they have failed. Great, accept it. Now move on because failure is not a reason to stop; if anything, it’s a reason to move on and conquer, part of the learning process.

Chelsea’s £60 Million investment looks to be their strategy to combatting last season’s disappointments and why they will probably win the Premier League again this season.

Because how we react to failure can be one of the biggest and best motivational tools of all. Identify its origins and develop a strategy to deal with it. Or lament it and stand still.

Which approach will you take, Tesco?

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