There is an I in TEAM.

By John Rahme


In everyday life and in all walks of life we use the simple letter “I”. The letter is used unsparingly in our conversations throughout the day. Mainly to describe ourselves or to indicate something we had involvement in. When discussions evolve around sport and team performances, the opposite happens. The word ‘I’ is treated with great caution and avoided at all costs. I find the same scenario occurs when I am within a group of people which I have been engaged to work with. This group being in the corporate world, where I am assisting and helping promote leadership, developing a culture and create a bond within the team. The word “I” is steered away from at all costs. As always, I ask them why?

An individual and all their thoughts, dreams and desires is a beautiful powerful thing. This thought, dream or desire potentially can make its way out of the person’s mind and become an energy. An energy so positive, that in the right environment it can drive and motivate people from all walks of life to change and better themselves in ways beyond explanation. I ask you to look no further than your own life and ask yourself, “Who has inspired me to make a change in my life in someway that it has led to a positive outcome?” I’m not asking for a name, but I know the answer is an I.

A question which I use often use when I am with a NRL Rugby League side is, “How many I’S are there in a team?” the answer without fail comes back as NONE. Wrong, I point out to them. “There are 13 I’S in a Rugby League side, count them.”


TEAM. Can you see it? Can you see how many I’s there are?


If you counted correctly, you would have counted 13 I’s.



Do not take what I am saying as in the case that any individual is bigger than any team. Absolutely not.  Sir Alex Ferguson the very successful former manager of Manchester United managed by this rule. What I am suggesting is that we should celebrate every characteristic that an individual has to offer which will add value to the team which they are a part of. Having the ability and freedom to add value to your sport team or workplace will empower you and also give purpose. Empowering one and giving purpose to an individual will unleash a power which from the beginning of time has moved mountains. Belief.






Whether you are in a team sport or in a work environment. Take the initiative to watch and investigate what value an individual can add to you and your comrades. Don’t shy away from it because you may feel that value and purpose must come from the collective. Embrace opinion and debate in a civilised discussion and debate. Let all the I’s who are working together have input into the together forward process.


As the late and great Muhammad Ali said, “ME, WE”