The Caddie’s Disposition
Taking career advice from Shimon Peres
I recently had the rare opportunity to play golf with a caddie. There are many upsides to playing with a caddie, like course knowledge and an uncanny ability to find the ball.
One thing, however, struck me as my friends and I played a mediocre round of golf; the caddie always positioned himself on the course as if we were going to hit a perfect shot. You only had to have played one or two holes with us to know that our next shot wasn’t going to be perfect. Yet, throughout all 18 holes Conrad assumed the best possible outcome.
Are there other aspects of our lives in which we are as generous with our selves and Conrad was on the course?
I was recently catching up with a career mentor and he said something that stuck with me, “you will likely get promoted 18–36 months behind your own career ambitions.”
Is that the caddie’s optimism? Or, Is it a lack of self awareness? Overconfidence?
As I progress in my career I am often reminded that patience and time have worked with me and not against me. I was recently reminded of this while watching “Never Stop Dreaming: The Life and Legacy of Shimon Peres”, a documentary about the legendary Israeli politician.
Peres lead an extraordinary life and career, serving as Israel’s prime minister twice and its defense/foreign minister a handful of times. In all, Peres was in the Knesset (Israeli parliament) from 1959 to 2007 (except for a 3 month period), making him Israel’s longest serving politician.
In 2007 Peres was elected to a 7 year term as President of Israel at the age of 84 years old.
All that is amazing. However, what was even more amazing to me was that Peres had the confidence to run for president in 2007 after having lost the same election in 2000 — his family had even informally voted against his candidacy after recalling his despair just 7 years earlier.
Peres could have retired in 2007 and still been one of the most influential world leaders of his era — just look at world leaders who showed up to his funeral. Yet, he didn’t feel like his work was done…and in many ways he was right.
So what gave him the confidence to run again in 2007?
Perhaps Peres had been at it long enough to know that time was on his side. Perhaps he had the ability to take up the caddie’s disposition, giving himself enough distance to look out for the perfect outcome.