When Roger Federer arrived at the 2019 US Open, a lot of fans wondered what kind of baggage he would be carrying with him. Just one month before, he had endured a devastating loss to Novak Djokovic in the Wimbledon men’s final.
I’m a huge Federer fan, and I found it more difficult to let go of his loss than Federer reportedly suggested it was for him. With two championship points in hand, he somehow managed to betray his stupendous talent and give up the points when they mattered most—even though he played better than Djokovic (even Djokovic admitted this). Federer won 14 more points than his opponent, but in the end, that didn’t matter. Because in tennis, it’s the big points that count.
At the time, it struck me that business leaders, too, can learn some important lessons from that memorable Wimbledon final.