The second of our four values is to be the crew. Now for those of us who have a limited understanding of sports not called baseball, basketball, or football, the term crew comes from the sport of rowing (and here I was thinking rowing was only used as a verb).
Rowing teams, or crews, can be made up of two to eight people depending on the competition and boat. To win the race, the crew needs to work together, in perfect harmony. When they do so they achieve what is called swing—an effect where every action is perfectly in sync. However, in order to achieve this, each team member has to commit. In The Boys in the Boat: Nine Americans and Their Epic Quest for Gold at the 1936 Berlin Olympics, author Daniel James Brown describes it this way:
“Rowers must rein in their fierce independence and at the same time hold true to their individual capabilities. Races are not won by clones. Good crews are good blends—someone to lead the charge, someone to hold something in reserve, someone to fight the fight, someone to make peace. No rower is more valuable than another, all are assets to the boat, but if they are to row well together, each must adjust to the needs and capabilities of the others—the shorter-armed person reaching a little farther, the longer-armed person pulling in just a bit” (Brown, 2013).
As Brown describes, being part of crew isn’t just about giving your all. It’s about coordination with your teammates, finding a good blend, and working together for success. No one can be a free rider, and everyone has to do their part.
At LiveView Technologies, we believe we are part of a crew. Everyone has a part to play to make the company not only function, but also succeed. Everyone’s part might look different, but we all have to dig our oars in and pull in order to go anywhere. We are all part of the team’s success.
Being part of the crew also means no one is above doing a job. In fact, until the company started gaining traction our founders and executives were the ones on sales calls or delivering units. We follow their example and do what needs to be done.
Lastly, being part of the crew means we give each other the benefit of the doubt and we trust, respect, and lift each other. No one is trying to win at the expense of another. Instead, we do our best to serve others, including our customers, partners, investors, and coworkers.
Brown, D. J. (2013). The Boys in the Boat: Nine Americans and Their Epic Quest for Gold at the 1936 Berlin Olympics. New York: Penguin Books.