Wednesday, March 15, 2017

3 Translations of Football to Business

I just LOVE when sports and business are intertwined (especially football!). When I worked for USC, we spent time on professional development as a team once a quarter. We would utilize these days as a condensed version of a retreat, where the day would be structured around spending time away from the computer and connecting with one another. There was always some type of theme we would base our day on, and when it came to the day where I had a part in planning, you KNOW I was about to do my all to insert sports in the day! We ended up heading to the football practice field, and spent the afternoon with my fave coach (the Hubs) talking about how football translated into our business world... same discipline... same teamwork... same leadership.

I came across an article on Football Scoop written about how Pete Carroll breaks down his practices for the Seattle Seahawks. I couldn't help by get a sparkle in my eye when I heard ALL TYPES of my lingo in the video interview. I've actually read about Pete Carroll's leadership philosophy in a few different books, and I've got to say... he's got this leadership thing working on his side. Just look at the successes he has carried throughout his coaching career!

I thought I would share the three main areas of importance Pete Carroll mentioned in his interview, which I thought were key in his leadership approach:

Pete (yes, on a first name basis now) talks about how his coaches meet 30 minutes before practice every day to get on the same page. They are expected to exert the energy they want to see in their players. Just as managers and leaders in an organization should demonstrate... leading by example in a transparent manner helps employees gain a clear perspective of what is expected of them. A key quote from Pete... "It starts with ME." ** Leadership stars all the way around! **

The Seahawks spend 2 hours practicing, and no more. They key is shaving down time during and in between drills by saving the chats with teammates for before or after practice. They also run to their next drill alongside the coaches to bank even more time. Although it's important to network and socialize at work to work on personal relationships, the more employees are mindful of how much time is spent socializing vs. getting work done, the less they have to jam pack in a day's work.

I love this point Pete makes about his players! He says competition is about striving for what you want, and not beating the other person down. Many employees get caught up in showing up another person so they can prove they're more qualified for a promotion or bonus. The only person we should be competing against in life is ourselves, striving to get better than what we were yesterday. "The guy across from you is the guy that makes you."- Pete Carroll

One other key thing Pete mentioned was effort. If players don't execute the way expected, coaches will first and foremost critique their effort. The effort players demonstrate is much more important to provide feedback on than the mistake they made in the run, play, or whatever went wrong.

These types of tips will not only help the leader (coach) out, but it also benefits the employees (players) as well as the organization (NFL or NCAA) in entirety. I'm excited to finish/start reading a few books that also translates sports into business... The Inner Game of Tennis and Legacy.

What speaks to you when you think of leadership?

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