The UK’s current sporting success in the London 2012 Olympics hasn’t been by accident. It is down to high levels of investment and resources being supplied over an extended period. This has supplied the strength in depth which provides winners and success, and a pipeline of future winners.
The question is, will we learn the lessons this provides for the UK’s Economy and the UK’s economic performance? The lesson that to succeed and have a strong economy (and I think society) depends on high levels of, and sustained, investment in: facilities (i.e infrastructure); training; education; research; systems of support; management to manage, and experts to advise. Only this will provide the strength in depth, so that we have a lot of high class condenders who are up there with the word’s best.
Success isn’t down to luck – it is down to hard work, investment, management and planning, and the Olympics has shown that with these the UK can be up there with the rest of the world.
Making the UK’s economy, its businesses, its people and its society the best in the world isn’t going to be done on the cheap – it needs sustained investment, not the austerity and cuts which the coalition government and some of the so called ‘market’ thinks is the recipe for success. Neither will short-termism, or on-off investment, work.
The sports’ bodies are already lining up to point out to the Government that success only comes through high levels of sustained investment and support. I only hope that the UK’s business community points out that exactly the same lessons apply to the UK’s economy, its businesses and its people. And the business leaders have to apply the same lessons to their own companies.
Let us also remember that high levels of support for sport can only come from, and be afforded by, a highly successful economy – unless we are trying to emulate the Soviet Union with its obsession with impressions over substance, that is. To be successful the athletes also needed a regular series of events for them to practice their ‘arts’ in – the equivalent of an economy where everyone can practice and hone their skills, expertise, and experiences over the long term and in a sustained manner.