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When children become champions

When children become champions

23/01/2017 - Rose Osemwengie

What are the key ingredients that elevate our children to stardom and enable them to harness their true potential?

Childhood is a period of bliss, innocence and growth – which is mental and emotional as much as it is physical. As parents, relatives and godparents, we will go to the ends of the earth to ensure our children are successful and have a better life than we did; because winners aren’t born, they are nurtured.

Click here to read and summary & download a free copy of our Winning Attitude whitepaper.

Already during these Rio 2016 Games we have heard numerous tales of the extremes that parents have gone to in order to support their children on the road to becoming Olympic champions, and the sacrifices that these stars have made in their early years to become successful.

Likewise, in our Winning Attitudes whitepaper (click here to find out more and download the research), the 42 winners from business, sport and entertainment that we interviewed frequently discussed notable experiences or external forces earlier in their lives that motivated them to persist and allowed them to grasp success. They reminisced on pivotal moments that changed their self-perception and created their hunger for greatness.

All of this leads us to ask the question: what are the key ingredients that elevate our children to stardom and enable them to harness their true potential?


As they grow and develop in the environment, children are Constantly Curious about their surroundings and experiences in the strange new world. These children are agile learners who have the ability to absorb huge amounts of information.

You may have once been approached by a child who asked an unexpected question, and whilst you searched for a befitting response, you also wondered ‘how do they know this?’. If you were ever one of those unsuspecting adults, it might please you to know that this inquisitive nature is one of the attributes identified by our winners as their key to success.

They continuously learn from the people around them, absorbing all information as they did so. This Attribute helps them to better understand their market and competition and therefore improve their own performance. Nevertheless, even as our children slowly understand the world around them, it is also important for them to own up to the mistakes on the way, and learn from them.


We may have also noticed how selfless and Intrinsically Generous children can be. The way they put the feelings of others before theirs, volunteering to help even when their tiny hands can’t reach and offering their food even though it might already have been half eaten. They trust their carers implicitly and look to them for support and guidance on their journey.

We found that our Winners interviewed for the Winning Attitude research also spend time and money to care for their colleagues, family and teammates and willingly seek the feedback of those around them. They find joy in helping others and giving back. This Intrinsic Generosity should be cultivated in children; they should be taught to give as much as they receive.


Children also have a number of winning strengths that would reflect positively in their adult life, if properly nurtured. One of these is Positivity. Children have the ability to bring sunshine to the room, their warmth and charm can soften the hardest of hearts. We may have once looked at the care free nature of a child surrounded by a callous world and wished we could tap into their joy.


Another one of these strengths is Innovation and creativity, reflected in a child’s endless imagination and ability to turn cardboard boxes into an imaginary castle.

As their adult carers, we are the Positive Forces in the lives of our children and it is our duty to identify and nurture these Winning Attributes. Our Winners owed their accomplishments to a supportive network of people around them and so do our children.

Nevertheless, failure was not absent from the lives of these Winners, and it was their ability to persist in the face of this that made them who they are today. As such, it is also important to teach the future generation of the challenges and setbacks they are likely to face on their journey to success, encouraging them to remain resilient through it all.

Various childhood events and experiences are life-defining; we have the ability to shape their future from an early age urging them to seize every opportunity that arises because childhood is a time when our kids become our champions.

To read more around what makes up a Winning Attitude from the point of view of 42 business savvy corporate CEOs and edgy entrepreneurs, committed Olympic and sporting stars through to charismatic media personalities, please take a look at our White Paper by clicking here.

Written by Rose Osemwengie, Business Psychologist


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