Become a Champion (Not Just a One-Hit Winner)



I've openly written about my lack of coordination and sports skills.   I know what you're thinking.  She runs marathons, so surely she's got some sports ability? I was never thkid picked . I stunk at Physical Education (straight C's).    However, I've learned through my own journey running marathons (slow), there's a lot we can glean from sports.

The most important?  Athleticism is more that just winning games. 

So, if you're Shaq or Michael Jordan or any player at Alabama, you've got a high degree of athletic technical skill but knowing how and why to win is more crucial.  Why is Nick Saban the most sought after coach in college football?  Because he knows how to win and wins consistently.  He also knows how to define a compelling reason of "why" to win.


Coach Saban...

  • looks at the broader picture.
  • understands his strengths well, and his competition even better.
  • handles his stakeholders (fans and administration).
  • recruits and leverages a fabulous team to execute.
  • wins by focusing on one game, one Saturday at a time.
  • drives continuous improvement from his wins and losses.
  • keeps going.

When I look at the kind of people I like to hire or teams I choose to join, I strive to look for leaders like Nick Saban.   I look for "athletes"...individuals...champions who crave improvement, have a reason to get better, help each other, compete with themselves and are looking for something bigger.    I want to surround myself with people who can think sustainable yet deliver quality nimble "plays" or solutions.

We have a lot of 'whining" in the world.  We love to define the problem (because that's easy), however shaping a strategy and executing simple solutions is difficult. We live in a volatile, uncertain, ambitious and complex world. When the season (or quarter) isn't going well, fans (and shareholders) are quick to shift their loyalties or focus.

Going long, developing endurance, and delivering a finish (win or loss/learning) is an athletic (and leadership) skill.  It's something I aim to master in developing in all the shoes I occupy:  mom, wife, runner, and leader.

What "athletes" do you have in your team?  How and what are you learning from them?  How are you helping others develop their athletic skills?

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