The set-up of a rowing team is iconic: rowers facing the opposite direction from that which they travel, pulling in unison with all their might. One individual, the coxswain, facing forward, steering, guiding, motivating, shouting “Heads in the boat! You got this! Keep it together! Let’s go! Give it all you’ve got!!”
Kimberly Chellino, Senior Project Manager at Lockwood, surprised everyone, maybe even herself, by joining the rowing team in college. What was she doing? She knew nothing about the sport going in. But curiosity, the love of water, and a sense of adventure won out over caution.
Initially at the back of the boat, she learned the primary question: “What will make this boat go faster?” Kimberly notes, “every movement of your body, if you are not exactly in line with the person in front of you, it slows down the momentum of the boat.” Harmonious alignment keeps the boat gliding forward at its best pace.
To bring about that alignment, the team practices, formulates strategy. They know the pace they need throughout the race to meet their goals. You aren’t always going at breakneck speed. That energy is saved for when it really matters.
It wasn’t long before everyone realized what Kimberly already knew: She was meant to be at the head of the boat as a coxswain. She helped the team train, ran practices/drills/race simulations, and coached her teammates on what they could to do make the team better.
At Lockwood, Kimberly is still the person facing forward. While the rest of the team has their heads in the boat, researching, creating and perfecting content, Kimberly safely guides everyone around obstacles, pushing for agreement on goals and encouraging them to stay on course, “You got this, team! Let’s go!”