What difference can a smile make in the workplace?
Accomplishments. Results. Production. Achievements. Profits. These are the words that tend to monopolize many workplace-legacy conversations.
Most of us would like to make an impact in our workplace. We’d like to contribute within our industry--make a difference—whether it’s finance, healthcare, higher education, construction, manufacturing, sports, etc. We’d like to leave a workplace legacy of sorts.
Today the sports world remembers one of its very best result-oriented producers; Tony Gwynn, who excelled in his workplace for decades, died at age 54 (much too soon).
Perhaps you’re wondering “Who was Tony Gwynn?”
Tony Gwynn was a Hall of Fame professional baseball player and one of the greatest hitters in the history of the game. A few highlights from his 20 years with the San Diego Padres (yes, only one team during his playing career) include:
8 National League batting titles
.338 career average
*Source (including additional bio information, testimonials, videos): ESPN
After he retired from professional baseball he transitioned to college baseball and became a successful coach at his alma mater, San Diego State University.
Yet, while Tony Gwynn absolutely accomplished A LOT during his playing and coaching career, it’s his character that has been touted by former teammates, coaches, baseball writers, college players, and countless other individuals. His personality, friendliness, smile, and laughter truly affected people.
I’m not surprised. We are relational beings. We value enjoyable interactions and moments with people. Doing one’s best in the workplace certainly matters, but being one’s best matters even more.
It is SO important that we engage with others. We shouldn't be afraid to smile and laugh.People, who make up our workplaces, are impacted. Lives are changed for the better.
Tony Gwynn’s workplace legacy reminds us that in our daily work environment we are capable of making a lasting impact in ways that have nothing to do with the bottom line or the final score.