Olympic-win formula can be applied to financial planning
February 27, 2014
An Olympic gold for men’s hockey on Sunday for many Canadians was the highlight of the winter games. Mission accomplished.
It was an aggressively lofty goal to repeat back-to-back gold medals in our sport because so many other counties are skilled in the game of hockey. While we celebrate our success we recognize that it was the result of a carefully orchestrated plan.
Apart from the hockey component, the group effort down the road to victory comprised of goal setting, planning, co-operation, teamwork and skill.
Is there a lesson we can learn from this hockey success that can be applied to our everyday lives? Can we all use a dose of Olympic hockey management to help us personally? If we all planned our personal financial management with the same focus and determination as our hockey team we would likely improve our financial outcome.
Success has a formula; whether it is a sport or any other aspect of life. The starting point for any venture including personal financial management is to set goals. Hockey’s goal at the Olympics was to win the gold medal.
This is why the players showed little emotion when they beat the Americans in the semi-finals to move on the gold medal game. Even late in the final game with a 3 to 0 lead over the Swiss team, the players and the executives watching from above showed little emotion.
The only focus was on winning goals. It was all and nothing else. Days earlier the American women’s hockey team had a 2 to 0 lead on the Canadians with only a few minutes left in the game. They lost to the Canadians in overtime.
After goal setting comes the planning. A lot of focus prior to the Olympics was the team management decision of planning who would be selected. One challenge is that we have a large number of world-class players. The team executives looked not only at talent but at what role each player would fill.
Co-operation and teamwork was significant in our victory. Most of the players are skilled at scoring goals and have enjoyed the personal glory that brings. Our team was built on defence and every player made that team priority their own. All players had skill and implemented the defensive team game plan flawlessly.
A goal in our personal world of managing finances is clearly the most important ingredient for success. Setting goals is the fun part. When do you want to have enough money saved to purchase your first or next house? When can you become debt-free? When can you afford to take your dream vacation? Will you be able to retire? Will your lifestyle remain the same in retirement or will you run out of money?
Planning your road to success can be done on your own, together with a family member or professionally with a financial planner. Determine how it is best for you to plan and then just go ahead and do it.
Co-operation and teamwork depends on who you elect to work with. There are many good options such as working with a bank, an investment advisor or a financial planner. Investment options include owning stocks, bonds, mutual funds or other forms of money management.
Similar to how our hockey team was selected, you choose from good options and then decide on who your team players are based on how you have planned your approach.
Our recommendation is to learn from the disciplined approach that won Canada the gold medal in hockey. Create your own financial success and that certainly would be mission accomplished.