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Lessons from the NFL

A friend of mine who spent years coaching in the NFL made an interesting point. He highlighted Bill Belichick of the New England Patriots and talked about Belichick’s ability to hone the special giftedness of his players.

For example, if a linebacker was very effective blitzing to the right but did not perform as well when blitzing to the left, the player would almost always be assigned to blitz to the right, where he could exercise his greatest strength and would most likely produce the desired outcome. This approach necessitates the establishment of an accountable team environment where there is a trust-driven interdependency and where each player holds himself accountable to execute well in his assignment.

Interestingly, the same thing is true in the corporate world. If we hope to maximize the performance of our people, we need to help them identify and exercise their areas of strength. We need to help them understand “who they are” as well as “who they are not.” It then becomes obvious why we need other people and why we need to work as a team. The lesson: If we selflessly focus on common goals, play to our strengths, and work as a team, we can expect to deliver higher performance and greater results.

Self-awareness enables individuals to focus on their strengths.

Common purpose and common goals promote team alignment.

Values-based behaviors create trust and deliver higher team performance. Guaranteed.

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