There are people and then there are support people. People, who make all the difference between success and defeat, a difference between profit and loss between action and preparation are the support people. People who support you in your decision, who help you to reach the right one and be your honest mirror, are the ones I refer them as Support People.
Not everybody is meant to take up this mantle and support is not just anybody’s cup of tea. Only few can enjoy this role. This is a role of unsung heroes, who have paved the way for the champions. They live the moments of action in different forms and in different permutations and combinations long before the real action has begun. If the thought of the captain of the college sports team being mobbed and you the coach being ignored troubles you, then perhaps you are not fit for this.
Would history have remembered Alexander as “The Great” if Aristotle, not been his guide at the age of thirteen? Would Helen Keller be a worldwide known face without the patience of Annie Sullivan? What would have happened if the elders of Kuru army did not believe in the cause and have not given key strategic support to Pandavas? Maybe, Mahabharat’s ending would have been different. When the subcontinent bowed its head to the ruler Chandra Gupta Maurya and Bindusar, Chanakya was content with the title of chief adviser. It was this support person, who was the cause of the fall of Nanda Empire and rise of an ordinary son of a royal concubine named Maurya to the royal throne of Magadha.
This role demands you to be a giver. A person who give his/her hours to groom others, equip others with right kind of ammunition needed to win the war. Imagine an army fighting some centuries ago without the chief scientist inventing new weapons or the physician taking care of the injured. At the end of the war, these valiant soldiers and commanders who get a hero’s welcome back in the city. The scientist who created those weapons which gave the soldiers the edge is perhaps watching the parade unrecognized. There is contentment on his serene face, a smile on his lips and pride in his people’s victory. This is our support person.
Centuries later, the war may have turned into the meeting rooms and the enemy, “difficult to achieve targets”. It is these support people, who help with all they have to ensure others get the recognition they needed and deserved.
Let us change our roles from third person to the non-support people and evaluate these support people. Support people are the only people who would fight you tooth and nail, only to defend you with their lives when you are back stabbed. When you are with them, they would show you the worst possible reflection of best picture, so that you are not caught unaware. And when you are not around, they are the ones, who would put themselves in harm’s way, maybe even take blame that heads your way to protect you, even though you are blissfully unaware of such things. They would equip you with all possible logic, data or theories to make sure, you are at the top of your game. You are ready to beat the opponent called target. Believe me, such people live and breathe in this world and I am one of the fortunate ones to have known them. The only thing that matters to them is an answer to one question, “Did I create a difference and made things better for others?”
It is not easy to be a support person and not everybody can be one. So, what is Jerry Maguire of Sports Management International (SMI) made up of? A right mix of selflessness and ambition is a basic requirement. Next in the list is endless energy to push oneself beyond one’s limit. One who is unabashed to take a step back and aggressive enough to push on the accelerator pedal is a support person. They are the ones who would put your requirement and your convenience before their own. Are you one of them? Let’s quickly find out with five quick questions.
Does someone’s success automatically bring smile and happiness to your heart?
Would you help others or yourself if it is not a matter of life and death but some discomfort?
Are you satisfied and happy with the knowledge that your work has helped someone achieve greater heights?
Does your heart bleed when you know you can make a difference and for some reasons you are not doing so?
Rather than as someone who was successful would you rather be remembered as someone who made a difference?
If any of questions leads to an answer of “No”, then you are no support person. Do yourself and everybody around you a favor, never ever get into a support role. If you crave to be a king, be a king even if it means a king of a small empire. Do not settle for the role of a prime minister, if you want to see a crown on your head. And if you are the one who would rather crown somebody, you know you are the person, we are talking about.