Think you know pain? Years ago, I was working on a marketing project with a former cornerback for the Washington Redskins, when they won the Superbowl under George Allen. I learned two things from him.
Playing in pain
He was about 5’ 10’’, of slight build. I had to ask him what any football fan would ask.” How the heck did you stop a 230-pound muscle machine of a fullback coming around the corner?” His answer: “You play in pain.”
Which explains while I dreamt of racing downfield to grab the long one, I was once fast and had great hands, I sort of shied away from pain. Love of pain was excluded from my resume.
Recognizing momentum shifts
The second lesson: Throughout the game the team has ups and downs. A dropped pass, the quarterback is smacked back for a ten-yard loss, or, the opposing team scores. The coach has to recognize those shifts in emotion and momentum. He has to be able to get his team back on focus, pick up their energy, keep them driving towards the goal line.
There are nuances in the flow of a team’s energy, spirit and momentum you don’t pick up unless you’re there on the bench or in the huddle.
Creating a winning culture
All great coaches in all sports create a culture of winning, of overcoming obstacles, playing in pain, getting through the team conflicts. Bringing a team together as one body, united in purpose, working cohesively doesn’t happen with a snap of the fingers.
I came across a blog from Lolly Daskal, an authority on Leadership, noted author and consultant to major corporations. She has some million plus followers. In her blog “How to be a Leader Who Gets Results” she gives some valuable insights on how to create a culture of winning through positive leadership. Her key point:
For your people to do their best, you have to establish a culture that fuels them to believe they can excel. She shows you how to build that culture.
Her blogs are short, you can read in less than 10 minutes. Though I’m sure you’ll give her points hours and hours of thought.