My inspiration for the concept of leadership is deeply rooted in my love for sports. Growing up, I had the privilege of playing with and competing against incredible athletes. Most of my life-long friendships came from either the football field or the baseball diamond.
My first mentors were coaches; they were men of integrity and authenticity. They not only had a love for the game, but more so a passion for developing young athletes into men who would one day lead and contribute to society.
It’s been 30 years and I still have relationships with those same coaches who molded my life. That says something about who they are. Men like Coach Padron, Reeves, Robbins, Black, Maldonado, Majek and others.
What they taught me in particular was not only a lesson on the field, but an advantage in life – having a CHAMPION MINDSET.
“A COACH IS SOMEONE WHO TELLS YOU WHAT YOU DON’T WANT TO HEAR, WHO HAS YOU SEE WHAT YOU DON’T WANT TO SEE,
SO YOU CAN BE WHO YOU ALWAYS KNEW YOU COULD BE.”
– Tom Landry, Dallas Cowboys Head Coach 1960-1989
It was an attitude applicable to my abilities, intelligence and potential. It was an influenced set of beliefs that was ingrained into my subconscious every day to create a frame of mind that no barrier was too big, no goal was unachievable and no dream wasn’t worth pursuing.
In essence, what they were doing was creating a winning culture by encouraging an environment of learning where all lessons were directed by a unified passion and dedication to a greater good, as opposed to only self-development. Everything we did as a team was done with pride and humility, and we were all on the same page.
I learned at an early age that failure was a necessary part of the final outcome. It was how I responded that was most important. As a result, the coaches had created an environment of vulnerability where I, along with my teammates, felt comfortable stepping outside of my comfort zone.
Their goals were that we, as a team will:
- Believe in the process
- Believe in the system
- Believe in our teammates
- Believe that we control our own destiny
Fast forward to the present, where I continue to apply that same CHAMPION’S MINDSET in everything I do. As a leader, I understand that if I want to have an influence on someone, if I want to bring about change, I have to invest the proper amount of effort, time and sacrifice. My commitment and dedication to each person I lead through action and example will dictate their willingness to adopt the same mindset.
“WHAT YOU ARE THINKING IS WHAT YOU ARE BECOMING.”
– Muhammed Ali, Three-Time World Heavyweight Boxing Champion
For this reason, I know that having a plan of action is critical.
That starts with a PURPOSE – A reasoning for what you want to accomplish, your true existence.
Followed by a VISION – What are my capabilities and those of the team I lead? What is the final objective and goal and what will guide our journey?
What are my VALUES – What are the right things to do that evoke the high standards and integrity that define my character?
Define the STRATEGY – A clear and concise plan of action that defines the path toward the established vision.
Establish the GOALS – The milestones that will mark our progress. They will be S.M.A.R.T. goals:
For this plan of action to be effective and successful, you must:
- Communicate often
- Communicate clearly
- Communicate efficiently
ALL WHO HAVE A ROLE MUST HAVE COMPLETE BUY-IN.
We never stop learning, but at the same time, we should always hold tight to the lessons that provided us with the most gain. We all have mentors around us; the challenge is to identify them, communicate with them and listen. The key word there – LISTEN. Be humble, vulnerable and willing to ask questions. Apply their lessons and if you fail, fail forward.
Once you have succeeded, the privilege falls upon you to make the same investment in somebody else to elicit greatness out of them. Mentorship is a pay if forward process. It is the key to ensuring our future leaders have the skills necessary to make an impact.
For me, it was the sacrifice and willingness of those coaches in my life who contributed in establishing the foundation to my success, confidence and gratitude to pay it forward, and for that, I will forever be grateful.
“A CHAMPION NEEDS MOTIVATION ABOVE AND BEYOND WINNING.”
– Pat Riley, 5-Time NBA Champion Coach, 1997-2003
Make a difference today.
LEADERSHIP IS A PRIVILEGE.
VENTURE + LEAD + PROSPER
Humbled to lead,
#chargeup #lessonsinleadership #leadership #lead #process #patience #change #venture #lead #prosper #reflect #inspire #empower #motivate #beyou #gratitude #integrity #starttoday #humilty
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