Last week I attended the Scottish Open. First things first, it was absolutely wonderful to be back out at a sporting event and to be perfectly honest with the restricted numbers it meant viewing was better than it would have previously been – the sun was shining and to be out walking The Renaissance Club for a day was a delight!
With me was my husband and son – now we wouldn’t be at such an event if we were not golf fans. My five-year-old LOVES everything golf. Playing, watching, talking golf and he had the time of his life. As you may expect from a child, he has his ‘favourites’, Rory McIlroy and Tommy Fleetwood. They were both playing and so we dutifully followed the groups both of these men were playing with so my son could watch his heroes.
As I stood watching I started thinking – wasn’t it amazing that this was their job?
If you are remotely into golf you can’t help but feel a bit of awe that these men get to go around the most beautiful spots in the world (golf lover or not you cannot undermine the scenery and beauty of some courses) and play the game for a living. I am of course romanticising it here as no doubt it has its challenges but for simplicity just go with me.
I was wondering how I would feel if I had thousands of spectators watching me while I worked and although this would be extremely dull for anyone to watch I wondered how I would cope. These professionals appeared to zone into their game and have absolutely no awareness of what was going on – in-fact a fan walked right onto a tee and took a golf club out of Rory McIlroys bag and managed to take a few practice shots before anyone did anything, every team member up there was in the zone. If you missed that the story it’s here.
But I got to see cracks, a few chips in the armour if you will and these were the golden moments of the day.
Anyone with children knows they aren’t naturally quiet beings, in fact they are the opposite! Thankfully my son knows on the golf course to be quiet and behave appropriately. However, watching his heroes there were a couple of moments he couldn’t quite resist.
Tommy Fleetwood had just hit a drive and was charging down the fairway completely focused on his next shot and a little shout came out of the quiet ‘Come on Tommy, you can do it’ from my son. Tommy looked up, smiled and gave him a thumbs up – recognition for my boy and his day was made. It was a fleeting moment in Tommy’s ‘working day’ but he took that moment to appreciate and acknowledge the remark. He was busy and playing for the winner’s share of $1,333,330 however he took that moment to say thank you.
Throughout the day my son was thrown balls from many of the professionals and given a smile or a wave. Just a moment for these men at the end of their working day. A quick thank you for his support and for being there. This was the end of the golf course and some of these men now knew they had zero chance of even getting a cut of the prize money. They were probably tired and frustrated at the end of their day however they still said thank you to fans.
So why did this strike me as something to write about?
It was that feelings provoked by the gratitude from my son. He proudly announced it was the best day ever. You couldn’t remove the smile from his face if you tried. Players acknowledging him and saying thank you meant he loved the game a little bit more. He was even more passionate about golf. He came home and wanted to go straight out on the course to practice.
As adults we no longer receive reminders from our parents or adults to watch our P’s and Q’s. But is it something we forget along the way? Do we just expect colleagues and clients to deliver stuff to us without even muttering a simple thank-you? Or if someone has really gone above and beyond, do you take the moment to appreciate it more than just a quick thank you in an email?
Last month we processed over 1.6 billion pounds of client payments – the stamp duty deadline resulted in an extremely busy time for the market.
Our teams did their job and processed these securely and accurately and numerous clients came back, unprompted, with some really nice thank you messages. We have shared these EVERYWHERE. Internally on our Portal homepage for all staff to see and publicly for the market to see. Again, I am harping on about it here because hearing and seeing someone say thank you is so important.
We all say thank you in day-to-day life but once in a while – take that moment. Lift your hat and throw someone a golf ball if you will. You might end up motivating someone so much they go away and practice their putting.
*And just incase you think a 5 year old is too young to golf, here he is in action