Two things stood out. The first was a comment by his former manager, Joe Torre, who said Jeter was special because he never became part of the “me, me, me” generation.
Then ESPN noted that he wore number 2 because he never wanted to be considered number 1, even though he was part of the conversation.
Jeter was the captain of the Yankees and was known as “the captain.” He was their leader.
His legacy, which included five World Series championships, said a great deal about leadership.
Leaders who are “full of themselves” and want everyone to know they are number 1 are not only difficult to work for; it is equally as difficult just to be in their presence.
I once met a man at a wedding. He was a real gentleman, had nothing to say about himself, and was extremely humble. I found out from others that he was the point person in the merger of two major American companies and that he and his wife had developed a ranch for special needs children. He never uttered a word about either achievement.
I had the unique opportunity to work in clinics with some of the best basketball coaches in the country, men like John Wooden and Dean Smith. I never once heard them talk about themselves or their achievements.
If you’ve done it, there’s no need to talk about it.
In this “me” generation, Derek Jeter showed us, did not tell us, but showed us what leadership is all about.