It’s 2 days before the start of the Rio Games, and I am thinking back to the same time before the London 2012 Games began, and how that feels for the Organising Team.
Years of work have led to this point and the World is waiting for the Opening Ceremony. For so many people it was their moment to perform under such huge pressure. The Rio team must be desperate to get off to a good start and to create the momentum for a great Olympic Games. In Business, as in Sport, momentum is key. Get things right and off to a good start and great things can follow as a result.
Before London the press were ready to pounce on any mistakes (especially after reporting the cost of the event, so soon after the financial crisis, again and again). The opening ceremony in Beijing had been staggering and lavish, and had finished with good old Boris larking around on a London bus. So there was an atmosphere of self-deprecation, and an acceptance that the opening ceremony, and probably the whole Games would be, well, not as good.
And then whhhoooshhhh – everyone who saw the London Opening Ceremony was blown away – they smashed it and performed brilliantly exactly when it mattered. The newspaper headlines the next day were awash with superlatives and, as a result, the country was supportive, proud and excited. The momentum gained from that evening was never lost.
Good luck to everyone who has worked so hard to this point, it is nearly your time so start quickly and use the momentum gained to have a great Games.