Ted and Joe were both star athletes in high school. Ted, the star of the basketball team, went on to become a successful CEO of a large corporation. Joe, the captain of the undefeated football team, became a preacher of the gospel. The two men saw one another for the first time since high school at their 25th high school reunion.
"Joe, I want to thank you for making me the success I am today," said Ted to his old friend. Joe replied, "I don't think I had anything to do with your success." Ted then explained his statement in the following way.
"You probably never knew this, but it drove me crazy when you were elected captain of the football team over me. So just before graduation, I asked the coach why the team voted for you over me. The coach then said something I will never forget. 'Ted, you were the best player ON the team while Joe wanted to be the best player FOR the team. You wanted to be the best PLAYER in the state while Joe worked to make us the best TEAM in the state.'
I now realize that the difference between us was that I was selfish and you were selfless. When I became more like you, I was voted captain of my college team and it helped me quickly climb the corporate ladder. The "old me" would have wanted my company to be the best IN the world. Now I strive to make it the best company FOR the world. That is why I want to thank you."