Many of my followers know that I like to adumbrate my lessons in football analogies. For those of you who enjoy that platform, great! For those of you who are not fans of this platform, I apologize, but as David Coverdale would say, “Here I go again”.
The Perfect Play:
It was a sultry evening. The sweat was pouring off the player’s bruised and battered bodies. The field had been reduced to a giant mud pit from the war that these two teams had battled over the last 59 minutes. It was the fourth quarter with only seconds left. The home team was down by 5 points and this was the last play of the game for the championship and they needed 45 yards for a score. The Head Coach had known that this was going to be a close game and he had also suspected the weather conditions would be wet and oppressively hot. So in preparation for the conditions, during the past two weeks, the coach had run his team through grueling practices to prepare for these conditions. He had also developed a play that, in his mind was un-defendable, if executed properly. They practiced this play hundreds, if not thousands of times prior to game time, and this was the culmination of all of their efforts. As the Quarterback approached the line of scrimmage, he surveyed the defense. As the Quarterback called his check downs he positioned himself in the shotgun position. He called out “Blue 32, Blue 32, Hut, Hut”! The Center snapped the ball perfectly into the QB’s hands, who handed off the ball to the Fullback. Just as it appeared the Fullback would be tackled, he tossed the ball back to the Quarterback, who threw the ball cross field to the Tight-end. The Tight-end had three tiers of blockers ahead of him as he sprinted down the sidelines, the 30, the 20, the 10. All the time the Head Coach sprinting down the sidelines screaming, “go, go, go!” Just as the Tight-end reached the 5 yard line he leaped into the air, where he was hit by the Strong Safety which threw him into a helicopter spin, landing in the end-zone for six points. The Head Coach looked up at the clock which read 0:00. They had won the championship!
Recently I have experienced many of my coached plays, if you will, being executed to perfection as in the example above. And just like the head coach in this story, I feel myself figuratively sprinting down the sideline with pride screaming go!
There is no better feeling than when you invest your time and efforts into a team or an individual, and then see them execute your lessons flawlessly. Furthermore, it brings great pride when you hear your words being repeated by your team in discussions with others. In my case it is phrases like, “you are the face of the company”, “provide plus one service”, or “if you don’t feel safe then don’t do it”. The true pinnacle of leadership is creating tomorrow’s leaders and when you can see that your team is running the plays you designed, you know they are well on their way. Just as in the story above it takes extensive practice and preparedness, but in the end to watch your team score that figurative touchdown, well there just isn’t a better feeling I know. So take the time to plan and prepare. Coach your team tirelessly and give them the tools to succeed. Then sit back and watch your team score the winning goal.