For most of the night, although eight players started at the table, the game was really between the two most experienced poker players. After a few hours, players began to be eliminated. As fate would have it, that pair of players were the final two left at the table.
One had a four of a kind following “the turn” card, and had a feeling that he had the best hand. Aware that either a straight flush or a royal flush would beat him, he had studied the cards dealt and was confident that the odds were in his favor. So what should he do?
YOU GO ALL IN
He slid all of his chips to the center of the table, his body language showing a bravado that he was willing to invest everything into this one hand. His opponent matches the bet. This was it — the final hand. The dealer threw out “the river” card and both players showed their cards. His opponent had a full house, an excellent hand to bet. However, he had four of a kind and had just won the game!
BEING ALL IN — what a great metaphor to describe the total confidence of investing all of yourself into something.
“IF YOU AREN’T GOING ALL THE WAY, WHY GO AT ALL?”
— Joe Namath, retired NFL player
There are times in our lives when we know that we are on the cusp of something big. When our knowledge, skills, relationships, acumen and leadership are in alignment and our vision and strategy is undeniable. Those are the moments that result from experience.
To be an effective leader, when your passion and purpose are genuine, you’re confident in your vision and strategy, being all in should always be your option. To achieve innovation, to be a visionary, to bring about breakthroughs, to accomplish the impracticable — there is no substitute for not embracing risk and giving it your all.
Your inward tenacity will be displayed outwardly by your excitement, confidence, passion, words and actions; you will persuade the team to follow you, even it means running through walls. Nothing less than perfection will result in a paramount outcome, and your team is ALL IN.
““TAKE EVERY CHANCE. DROP EVERY FEAR.”
True visionaries, those who have made a tremendous impact in this era of business, are defined by their courageous and innovative actions to make positive changes. These advancements required tremendous knowledge, skill and most importantly, the right people.
When you think about the visionaries over the past twenty years, names like Steve Jobs, Bill Gates, Beth Comstock, Mark Zuckerberg, Mary Barra, Elon Musk, Jeff Bezos, Indra Nooyi, just to name a few, come to mind. Each will tell you that it took an army of committed, dedicated and fully vested people to turn their dream into a reality. None of their accomplishments were overnight successes, but rather long-term investments of both time and money by a team committed to being all in.
“INNOVATION DISTINGUISHES BETWEEN A LEADER AND A FOLLOWER.”
— Steve jobs, Apple
For those of us not leading a Fortune 500 company, let’s dig into how to create an ALL-IN mindset with your team today, regardless of size.
As a leader, you can have the best strategy out there, but without passion, it’s just ideas on paper. Your passion has to be an expression of your strategy if you want others to not only follow, but to believe, in you. It all comes down to an effective, well though-out, and well-communicated mission, vision and purpose.
You must consider both the macro and the micro approach to your vision, or you risk losing momentum on a long-term goal. Keeping your team involved, empowering them to contribute and communicate, ensuring consistent feedback and reinforcing the end objective will play a key role in creating an environment of successes, fostering teamwork and cultivating a sense of purpose. That will result in being all in!
Next, encourage your team to take calculated risks, regardless of the chance of failure. As an effective leader, you should have a general idea of the parameters of those risks, but create an environment where they step out of their comfort zone and think outside the box. And if they do fail, encourage them and have them keep going. Don’t show disappointment, this is where you earn your stripes, be a leader and mentor. Remember, you are helping them grow through personal experience.
“TAKE RISKS: IF YOU WIN, YOU WILL BE HAPPY; IF YOU LOSE, YOU WILL BE WISE.”
Celebrate every small success along the way – even small steps forward are achievements. Recognize your people, talk through the actions taken and give them the attention. Being a leader can be a lonely job if you are selfish, and this exercise will reveal a lot about you. Be selfless and observe the pride your team members take. Do this right and the long-term achievements will amaze you.
Do these things, and watch your team go from good to great, with the power of the mindset of being ALL IN.
Make a difference today.
LEADERSHIP IS A PRIVILEGE.
VENTURE + LEAD + PROSPER
Humbled to lead,
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