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Life Lessons from the Tennis Court

Tennis artwork print by Leroy Neiman

Print by Leroy Neiman

In my office, there is a Leroy Neiman print of a doubles tennis match. The scene shows doubles teams squaring off cross the net as one steps forward to take a shot. The colors are bright and energetic and it serves as a reminder to me of a few key life lessons:

Lesson #1 – I’d rather be playing tennis.

I work hard at Asher so I can spend my free time in my favorite setting, the tennis court.  Managing my time and completing my responsibilities allows me to walk out the door without anxiety of looming emails or calls from clients.

Lesson #2 – You need to work together to win.

A married couple playing doubles together is jokingly referred to as “Divorce Court”.  This is because any spats or baggage you bring on the court will inevitably rise to the surface.  Being on a doubles team, or any team, requires respect, communication and trust.  It’s a whole lot easier to win a match, if you can count on your partner to cover their part of the court.   Vice versa, you need to trust your partner that they can handle the shots coming their way.

Lesson #3 – Follow through is critical.

Just as your tennis form requires you to swing “through the ball” so too in business do we need to complete the job.  It’s not about getting the marketing materials out the door, but following up to evaluate the results.  This shows clients that you take pride in your work and care about their successes.

Lesson #4 – Know your strengths and weaknesses.

Transparency with your tennis partner is crucial.  Not just in establishing trust but in developing a winning strategy.  If I can’t run down a short shot, I need to own up to it and let me partner know to be prepared.

Written by Jeanne Otis

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