Winning at someone’s else expense is completely counterproductive

Anais N.
3 min readFeb 16, 2017


I remember my first week at previous company. I came out one morning and kindly asked my colleague from marketing department to help me dealing with a client.

Here is what he said : “If I help you, then, you will do better than I will and you’ll get promoted and I won’t”.

In other words, he refused to help because we might be competing one day. Despite the fact we were on the same boat.

Who is to blame then ?

Certainly not him.

I mean, not entirely him.

If we look closer, it can’t be denied that, since our very first time at school (maybe even earlier), we’re more encouraged to win at someone’s else expense than to get practice helping others.
Then, in addition to focus on clients, or learning for an exam, we also have to deal with pressure and constantly have to think about how well other colleagues or students, whom sometimes are friends, will perform and hope for them to fail.

After months of working in such an environment, I realized that this competitive mind-set, where you win at someone else’s expense, was completely counterproductive and absolutely not for me. Almost everything in life is done in teams, and those who don’t know how to make others successful are at a huge disadvantage.

The best team players go to great lengths to make others successful. The higher you reach within an organization, the less important your individual contributions become. Instead, your job becomes leading, inspiring, and motivating others, then your ability to execute diminishes. Successful team players understand what drives each person on the team and look for ways to make them successful. Additionally, great leaders figure out a work for everyone to play to his or her individual strengths. And that is exactly what I experienced when I had my first job interview with Fred Mouawad — a gifted businessman (and, according to Business Insider, one of the most interesting businessman in the world) based in Bangkok, Thailand, chief executive of eight companies.

Fred Mouawad is successful, humble and reachable. He interviewed me in person. Part of his strategy has been to surround himself with people who are completely aligned with his goals and values. And my proud is he hired me and gave me the opportunity to join his team, and, eventually, enjoy a great work environment. I am now doing what I do best and I really appreciate what other people on the team bring on the table. Everyone has a job perfectly tuned to his or her skills and interests. Everyone feels great about his or her contributions and celebrates the contributions of others.

Wish me…inspiration.