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LEADERSHIP IS A PROCESS OF SOCIAL INFLUENCE, WHICH MAXIMISES THE EFFORTS OF OTHERS TOWARDS THE ACHIEVEMENT OF A SHARED GOAL.
Wednesday, November 03, 2010
Amir Khan is an Olympic Silver medallist, a Commonwealth Gold medallist and since July 2009, he has been WBA Light Welterweight Champion.
However, back in September 2008, when he was undefeated and riding on a crest of self-confidence (or perhaps arrogance) he took on little known Breidis Prescott. At the time, Khan was being talked up as the best fighter alive. Khan was knocked out by Prescott in 54 seconds of round 1!
‘After that defeat, my mind was all over the place. All those dreams; suddenly I didn’t know if they were going to come true’, says Khan.
Khan had made a classic fighter’s mistake – he looked lean and mean but inside he was getting soft and comfortable. Defeat brought him to his senses. You only stay sharp by constantly proving yourself. As a result, Khan decided to change almost every aspect of his working routine. He moved from Bolton to LA.
‘I moved everything. I made sacrifices; being away from home, being away from my family. I came to a place where no one knew me and a boxing gym where you have to earn your respect’, says Khan.
He started to spar with world champion, Manny Pacquaio. Khan quickly realised that the way you see yourself is less important than the impression you deliver to others. That lesson transformed him. After moving to LA, Khan began winning again. He won the world title in July 2009 and defended it in May 2010.
Khan’s training regime is now intense. He trains twice a day. His strength and conditioning trainer Alex Ariza’s philosophy is that ‘Everything is supposed to be hard. If it was easy, I’d have a thousand guys doing it.’ Ariza says his circuit training has a 98% drop out rate. Khan had never trained this way before. He used to train once a day. Now his approach is to ‘train hard, fight easy’.
Khan’s rise, fall and rise again is a testament to his resilience and to the need for hard work if you want to become a winner at anything.