One was called Mr. Hockey. The other they called the King.
Gordie Howe and Arnold Palmer
Each was the best of their era, as well as the best of men.
Gordie Howe played 25 seasons in the NHL more than any other player. Big and tough as well as graceful, Howe scored more goals and assists than anyone in his time and served as the game’s greatest ambassador and one of its most beloved characters. Howe was Mr. Hockey.
As famous as he became, Gordie remained humble.
Arnold Palmer won many golf tournaments. Along the way, he popularized golf in ways it had never been popularized. His winning ways, and his winsome smile and swashbuckling golf style, made him a hit with advertisers.
A key to Arnold’s passion for the game as well as his love of people can be attributed to his father, Deke, who taught him to respect fans because they were the same as he was.
It should be mandatory for anyone becoming the head of an organization to study the examples of Gordie Howe or Arnold Palmer, not simply to get a taste of their competitive fires, but more to learn how to act “normal” when everyone wants a piece of you.
John Baldoni is an internationally recognized leadership educator and executive coach. In 2017, Trust Across America named him a Top Thought Leader in Trust for the fourth consecutive year. Global Gurus ranked John No. 22 on its list of top 30 global experts, a list he has been on since 2007. In 2014, Inc.com named John to its list of top 50 leadership experts. He is the author of more than a dozen books, including his newest, “MOXIE: The Secret to Bold and Gutsy Leadership.”