As graduation season is now concluding, I was thinking back to earlier this year when
I had the privilege of attending Daniel and Henrik Sedin’s jersey retirement ceremony. It was so amazing to see them recognized for their 18 year contribution to the Vancouver Canucks. Being 9 years into my career, I was in awe of how they were able to stay with the same employer for the entire period. In my career so far, I've worked for 5 different employers.
The Sedin twins started their careers in Vancouver in 2000 at just 20 years old. They played on the team until 2018 and helped the Canucks reach the Stanley Cup finals in 2011. They were truly respected by their peers, coaches and the community. They were grateful for every opportunity and worked exceptionally hard to be the best they could be for both themselves, the Canucks organization and the Vancouver community. There is so much we can learn from them and their careers to build our best careers and be our best selves.
You don't know what you don't know. Early in my career, a manager shared these words of wisdom with me. And he couldn't be more right. It’s difficult to see beyond what we know. Coming from a small town in Sweden, the Sedin's had no idea what to expect in Vancouver, Canada. A different language, culture and climate. Although, they were still playing hockey, there was so much to learn about the Canucks, the NHL and their teammates.
You can’t do it alone. Every successful person has help from a number of people along the way. Yes, they had exceptional talent and steadfast determination, but those two things alone can't get you to the big leagues without the right person seeing them. Whether it’s a scout flying from overseas, a coach, mentor or friend. All the Greats had a team of people who believed in them and helped them achieve their dreams.
Believe in yourself and be willing to put in the time. When expectations are high and you aren’t quite living up to them, you need to believe in yourself to keep fighting to be where you know you can be. Resilience is such a difficult skill to learn because we have to keep going when things get hard. It’s so easy to give up and throw in the towel. Many had high expectations when the Sedin's joined the Canucks and in the beginning they weren't living up to them. But they worked hard and 18 years later are celebrated as some of the best Canucks of all time.
I learned so much from the Sedin twins through watching the Canucks on and off over their career, but it really came together at their retirement ceremony. It was an amazing event, from the special edition number 22 and 23 cans, to Ryan Kessler's heart-filled speech to watching the jerseys go into the risers. I feel so fortunate to have witnessed it and hope we are all able to have long and prosperous careers doing something we love.