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Playing on a Super Bowl Championship team taught me so many skills that transfer over into corporate performance. Let me touch on four principles today that I believe you can practice, empowering your team to perform at an elite level.
1) Create an environment where Questions are encouraged and celebrated. In the Indianapolis Colts offense one mantra we had was that we cannot afford to ask questions on game day. This belief was practiced by creating opportunities for questions to be asked at the end of every meeting. The expectation though was that players must ask a question because the reality is that many people, no matter their age or experience, still feel insecure at times when asking questions in front of others or when speaking directly to their leaders. Coach Dungy believed there are NO foolish questions. The only way to discover the right answer is to ask the right question. Practice asking great questions!
2) Accountability played such a crucial role in the performance of our team. Every day we stepped into an atmosphere that relied on the “Eye In The Sky”. This was the reality that every minute of our days on the practice field are filmed and evaluated. The “camera lens” was one of our greatest accountability partners because it didn’t allow you to hide any weaknesses. Every second of every day was about turning your weaknesses into strengths that would improve individual performance and elevate team success. How can you create your own “Eye In The Sky” level of accountability and evaluation?
3) As an athlete, Recovery is critical to performance. Every single morning and late afternoon, we had access to recovery tools. These tools were designed to allow us to take care of our minds, bodies, and spirits. Whether is was receiving treatment on a sore muscle or injury, or daring to soak in an tub filled with ice and water, or relaxing with teammates in the players’ lounge, recovery was a chance to breathe, rest, and prepare to go back to work. Find ways throughout your hectic and challenging days to find recovery moments that allow you to breathe and find peace. Practicing recovery will improve your ability to endure the work day!
4) At the end of the day you have to Perform. Take this opportunity seriously because leaders are always watching. Practice your performance technique in whatever industry you’re in, through mental walk-thrus and visualization techniques. Before every performance we would walk through every single play that we installed during the week of practice. This allowed us to visualize, in slow motion, all of the possible ways a single play could change. Every industry will be unique, but you will still be able to find time and the right walk-thru model that you can practice in order to improve your game day performance.
Be A Champion!