By Gary Hibbs
Legendary baseball player and manager Casey Stengel once quipped, as he was oft to do, that “Finding good players is easy. Getting them to play as a team is another story.” I have found this to be so true in a lot of different settings, not just the baseball diamond. If someone with raw, God-given talent combines those gifts with ego and insecurity on any team, it can really jettison hope of the team operating well.
Here at Riderwood, we have a large “team”. And I’m not just talking about staff. I mean anyone who touches Riderwood in any way. It includes residents, families, staff, corporate Erickson support, vendors, outside friends…the list can go on and on. We each have a role on the “Riderwood community team” where our collective goal is to “Create a community where we share our gifts to celebrate life.” That’s what we are about.
I used to play soccer (thirty years and thirty pounds ago!). One of the keys to a great soccer team is that each player needs to know his or her position and stay within that role. It gets messy if you don’t play your position. Have you ever seen a bunch of five-year-olds playing soccer? What do they do? They all run straight for the ball and get out of position! Why? That’s where the action is, and that’s where they’ll get noticed. (Remember, “Mom, look at me!!”) When life becomes all about me, life is dysfunctional, and so are teams.
This struck me last month after having participated in the volunteer program. We have a great team at Riderwood! Did you know that almost one-third of our 2,500-plus residents volunteer in some capacity? And that’s just counting those we know about! The selfless role of volunteer is perhaps the most important role on Team Riderwood. The countless hours and the incalculable impact is, dare I say, huge.
Thank you to all who think of others and act. You make our mission real, and our community dynamic. See you around and enjoy the Spring weather that has finally arrived!