Arnold Palmer is arguably the people’s choice as the greatest golfing personality of all time. He put a face on the game of golf by giving back to his fans all of the honor and prestige that he ever earned in his golfing career. A four-time Masters champion, Palmer never lets success go to his head and to this day rarely declines a fan’s request for an autograph.
Standing close by this man, you can almost sense his feeling of indebtedness to the throng of fans, which has come to be known as Arnie’s Army. In some ways he is a striking enigma. The dominance of his physical strength, which is obvious in his massive forearms and hands, is immediately tempered by the friendliness of his eyes. He intentionally connects with fans by frequently making eye contact, which he sometimes even follows with a gentle smile or a slight nod, almost as if he is greeting an old friend. And that’s just how you feel around Palmer, like an old friend.
Arnold Palmer, Jack Nicklaus and Gary Player, made up what was known as golf’s Big Three, the unbeatable triad of champions. But certainly, of that threesome, Palmer was the one who, in the height of greatness and success, gave back to the average fan the special sense of what is must feel like to don golf’s most coveted prize, the Green Jacket.
Day 20 Guide:
Today, I want you to make yourself available and accessible to the people around you. As a parent, an employer or a friend you certainly will have the opportunity today to draw people closer to you by the way you respond to them. A gentle smile, eye contact, a compliment or a hug – all of these small things will go a long way in making yourself more available.
Be honest in your effort to do this, however. It is almost impossible to hide impatience and apathy. You have only to think of the instance when you’re talking to someone who for the most part is attentive but then makes one glance toward his watch as if he has something else on his mind. Immediately, the connection is lost and you realize that his attention is divided.
While I know that it is not always possible, when someone wants or needs your time give it to him.
© 2004, Levi Hill