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The small gesture that elevated a team and its star

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in Best-Practices Leadership,Leaders & Managers

This month, the U.S. women’s soccer team made history by being the first team to win three Women’s World Cups. But that might not be the most memorable thing about the day. In fact, we give that honor to Carli Lloyd, who showed what true teamwork is all about.

Nearing the end of the game, Lloyd, after a great performance, was replaced by Abby Wambach, a soccer legend deserving of an opportunity to compete in her final World Cup contest.

As Lloyd left the field, she removed the captain’s armband from her own arm and placed it on Wambach’s. Regarding the seemingly small act, Lloyd says: “I wanted to make sure she put the armband on because she deserves it. She has been legendary to this team. She’s been unbelievable. I’m so thankful I can call her my friend and my teammate, and I’m just so proud that in her last World Cup she could go out strong.”

Classy, absolutely. But it also teaches us a great lesson. In the workplace, people are far too often focused on their own ambitions and getting ahead, even if that means stepping on the toes of co-workers. They are quick to point fingers, steal credit and undermine others’ efforts, all in the name of climbing the ladder.

Carli Lloyd wins Best Communicator of the Month because on the biggest stage possible, she chose to uplift, honor and celebrate a teammate. Follow her lead, and find ways to recognize the efforts and loyalty of your own teammates.

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