Wednesday, January 14, 2009

Are you working as a Team?!!!

Happy New Year to each and everyone of you. I hope that you had a great time enjoying the holidays with family and friends. I don't know about you but I'm always excited about getting back to work yet have a bit of a hard time getting a jump on it. So, here it is January 14th and I'm way over due to get rolling, so I figured I would start off with updating my blog.

I'm in the middle of coaching my son, (Logan's competition basketball team) #25 (how funny is this picture, Logan is around 5'6" and he looks like a giant compared to this kid). Anyway, my analogy is coming from my coaching experience this year and you know how I love analogies (yeeha) so I thought I would share a few things that I've learned recently.

At the beginning of the season I was able to protect 6 boys that I wanted on my team. Protecting them guaranteed they were on my team without drafting them. Anyway, I snatched the 6 up that I wanted pretty quick, 4 of them came from my team the previous season. I knew the skills that I wanted in a player and most importantly if they were teachable and had a good attitude. I didn't call every Tom, Dick and Harry to see if they wanted to play. I was very specific in the qualities I required in a player to work with. Then, I went to drafts to pick up 4 more players. I watched for the qualities in those players that came to try out and obviously chose the boys that I felt had those qualities or abilities needed to learn.

I was thinking the other day how the process I use in drafting my team really isn't any different than looking for people to join your business. You already know what qualities you're looking for so you actually spend your time looking for people with those qualities. If someone you come across doesn't have those qualities you simply ask them to "love their neighbor" and you don't draft them (move on). How nice is it to have the choice of who you want to work with? hmmm

So we started practicing and I quickly learned what I had to work with. I already knew the skills of the 4 from my team last year so that was no surprise except they had grown, matured and improved drastically (amazing what a year can do). I learned that each player had individual things they needed to do in order to improve on their strengths and their weaknesses.

It's interesting that some players naturally play better, they have the abilities and probably more experience than others and its obvious. I can show a play to my first string and they can implement it right away. My second string on the other hand, it takes many times to go over the plays and they still struggle with executing it. It isn't any different than networking. Some people are natural or have a belief in themselves that allows them to get through the obstacles faster. It's ok and actually it's rare to have people in your business like that. Most people are like my second string in that they need continual guidance, practice and training until they are ready to apply things without your coaching.

Let me also point out that I have an awesome assistant coach and he's so good at picking out things that I miss. He also has a different approach in coaching than I do and it's refreshing to see a player be more receptive to the different tactics we each have. I'm so grateful that I don't have to coach my team alone. In my opinion, I would be doing the players a disservice by even trying. There's nothing worse than thinking you know it all and try to do everything alone, it helps no one. Even as a coach it can't be done. You can't see everything you need to see.

I love the dynamics of people, we're all so different which can be good and bad. It's good if you are patient with those differences and bad if you aren't. I find that as I work with each player individually where they need work and point out their strengths they have a new sense of excitement about playing, not only that they try harder to do better. I found that I could work on some things as a group but it was more important to help individuals where they needed it so that the team could move forward as a whole.

So far we're having an awesome season. Word on the street is "we're the team to beat" I'm ok with that hanging over our heads. It makes us step up, be sharp, and play hard.

I hope you understand the power of working with your team and the power of not doing this business alone. Always remember that everyone has unique differences, strengths and weaknesses and with team effort they can be overcome and benefit everyone involved in the process. If you don't have a coach helping you with your business, find one!

Make it a Great day!

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