Uh-oh: another book written by a sportsperson (in this case, Ben Hunt-Davis, an Olympic champion in rowing’s coxed 8’s in the Sydney Olympics of 2000) about defeating the odds after a career of almost-winning. Surely this can add nothing to the already-saturated world of the published bon-mots and tired homilies that follow major sporting events?
Well, actually: this is a really good read! Not just because Hunt-Davis has a story that deserves to be heard (especially since most people probably do not remember him in the shadow of a number of better-known British rowers); but also because Harriet Beveridge (management consultant, coach and stand-up comic) adds real value by interpreting and summarising the lessons learned from the rower’s story. Laid out chronologically in the run-up to the Sydney games, the first chapter looks at the importance of setting goals. What I like about this is the idea of ‘layered goals’ – from the ideal to the bite-sized everyday goals. It talks to the concept of being purposeful: everything comes back to purpose.