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Volunteer Diary: Being a team leader
09 August 2007

Beijing, China: I was chosen to be one of the team leaders for the volunteers in cycling events for"Good Luck Beijing". The organizers gave us a series of training courses on how to lead a team and how to be a good leader in order to complete the work well. The training courses were really hard. We had to get up at six in the morning and begin our training class. After all, there is so much we need to learn that we should get familiar with the job as soon as possible.

After having those courses under my belt, I can't help thinking how to be a qualified team leader. SPS, which is short for "spectator service" is the 'face' of the games. We are going to 'face' the visitors and help them.

Part of our duties is to smile at least eight hours a day. We will be helping different kinds of people. This means thinking of everything that could possibly happen when the Games are on. Smiling is not difficult for most of us, but how can one keep smiling for more eight hours a day? The work is not difficult, but what is hard is finishing it and doing it well.

I still remember when someone asked me why I wanted to be a volunteer. "Can you benefit from that?" they asked. Yes -- I can get a lot of things, like the happiness from helping others, and the realization that I can do something.

During the training classes, the teacher told us a story about a girl who worked as a volunteer during last year's games.

"Each time I left the dining hall, I realized that she always put her hand on her stomach. I asked her why, and she told me that she had a stomachache and couldn’t eat too quickly. I advised her to eat slowly next time.

"No, I can't," she replied."If I eat slowly, the volunteer taking my place will not have time for lunch. I have to eat as quickly as possible to replace them."

Having learned from this story, as a team leader, I will make a proper schedule to make sure each volunteer has enough time to eat. Being a volunteer, we don't want to complain about small things like this. The only thing we want to do is try our best by offering help to the visitors. This is our part in making sure so the Games go well. We are happy to offer help to others, and we are glad we can do our bit for the "Good Luck Beijing" games.