I never liked PvP (player vs player) games. I was more of a Co-op kind of player, where the team is far more important that any single player. I’ve always preferred games where missions need a functional team to be completed, the concept taken from real life teams where the whole is only possible if each member of the team does his or her own part. But even so, in both real life and in gaming…the presence of a Star is what changes the game for the team. That one person that can shift the energy of the team, taking the extra burden, walking the extra mile and run faster than the rest.
But what happens when you don’t have a Star? It seems absolutely possible, specially when the team you are leading or are part of is not motivated, or when the whole Stardom concept is tabú. What if there is not one person on that team that excels? Is that a bad thing? What’s the price of not having that extra surge of energy a Star brings to the team? And in particular, can you afford it?
Best and simplest way of saying it: they are who they are in spite of the team. The cheesy way of saying it is that they shine with their own light. Having said that, there’s a warning: not everyone that shines is a star. You need to watch for those that reflect the light of others. I would say that for every person that does shine on their own on a team, there’s an exponential number of people who copy or reflect that shine and sometimes that is a good thing: sometimes a Star inspires other people and they just follow and repeat, which is not bad at all.
A Star just is.
Finding them can be hard because of these reflections. You will notice there’s one around because of the effect they have on the team: silent admiration. They might be called “the best” by their peers or superiors, they might be regarded as the Top Performers and receive formal acknowledgement…but that’s not what makes them a Star. The fact that they never stop and are always one step ahead does.
They do not need motivation, yet empowerment helps them. They share because they see the power of collaboration and the benefits they can rip. They are not afraid of slowing down though, and they do just to get everyone up and running again.
As a team member I remember hating not being the Star. Not because I was jealous of others that were indeed stars, but because I never knew but it took to be one. In my mind, someone had to give me a manual that explained how to shine, how to be unique. It wasn’t my fault I wasn’t shiny enough. Sometimes when I did find someone that had that spark I yearned for, instead of learning from them I would shy away. I didn’t want to reflect their light, I wouldn’t follow them but rather walk my path, alone if needed. My conscious decision was more than once, that if I couldn’t be the Star then I needn’t be it.
I got it wrong. Everyone and anyone can be a Star, which doesn’t mean you need to be the best at everything or anything at all. You just need to be. I used to think that people that’s good at something is probably good at other things too and that perfection had to do with results and methods rather than with anything else but later in life I discovered that Stars are everywhere, yet they shine differently depending on where you are standing when looking at them.
That’s when it hit me: every team needs a Star, and that Star can be anyone on the team at any given time. The bigger the team, the more chances you have of finding one, nurturing it and then watch it amaze everyone including you. If you stay long enough you might even shine back at them…and become your own Team’s Star.
I learned that in a Company, Stars are needed, sought for and in order to become one all I had to do was take my time to become one. I am not certain I did at any point, but this approach changed me: it allowed me to find some Stars and bask in their light, grow with them and learn. I was even privileged with the opportunity to find Potential Stars and help them get under the spotlight an see them overshine that light.
And let me tell you, there is nothing like watching a star being born.