A Dynasty is winning the championship over and over again, like John Wooden and the UCLA Bruins, or like Vince Lombardi and the Green Bay Packers. Success in business is about developing a winning team that learns how to repeat its successes and victories, again and again. Sustainable success is the real mark of leadership in business. This is our second in a series of discussions on how a Leader goes about building a team worthy of a dynasty.
Prepare To Select Draft Picks Wisely: Like a professional sports team, corporations must realize that without the best players (employees) their chances of winning are not great. Accordingly, you need to invest your time to prepare to attract and hire the very best talent that you can. Interview with rigor and use a very intelligently structure recruiting methodology to ensure that you get the BEST employees who FIT your culture and understand the importance of teamwork. Without a cohesive team of talented players, all of whom understand that the TEAM is more important than the individual, you will be struggling to win. Don’t be confused about talent. The players you want on your team have to bring talent to the team, but unless they are people of great character that you can nourish into great team players, you don’t want them on your team. No prima donnas! Your team ideally will be made up of talented players, with integrity, who will sacrifice for the benefit of the team, work hard, and who are HUNGRY to taste success.
Act Like A Great Coach: Not only do you need to lead by example and model the habits you want your team to demonstrate, but you also need to be a fantastic teacher and coach. Don’t miss an opportunity to instill the values of the team, don’t miss an opportunity to show the team how to execute the business plays that will lead to victory. Sports teams who win championships practice, practice, practice, and then practice some more. Their preparation is legendary. Your preparations must likewise be legendary. Use each business day as an opportunity to reinforce the work habits and processes that are going to contribute to YOUR business results, and build a team that can deliver victories even in times of adversity. Teach your team to embrace mistakes and learn from them, teach them to focus on the journey forward, and discourage blame and negativity. Everyone on the team must be positive and focused on the objectives of maximizing our chances of improvement to begin to enable repeat victories and championships.
Course Corrections Only With Care: We’ve all seen the ESPN videos of coaches melting down in times of trouble. Have you ever noticed that you don’t see a video of Vince Lombardi or John Wooden melting down at a press conference? That’s because winning requires self-control, maturity, and balanced emotional stability. Surely great leaders will have to inevitably ‘course correct’ when the team gets off track, but it must be done to keep the team on the rails toward forward progress and to keep the team in the game and protect the chance of victory. Tremendous leaders learn to give criticism without damaging the psyche of the team. When you give performance feedback to your workers and colleagues, remember to be relevant, be specific, and avoid damaging personal attacks. It is MORE than possible to be constructive as you provide criticism, and this leads to your team knowing that you want the best for them. Remember to be just as cautious with your praise to the team, you don’t want to become fodder for a Dilbert cartoon. False praise doesn’t feel right and doesn’t help anyone. If you want to inspire confidence in your team the best way is to be professional at all times and to use support and praise as deftly as you do criticism. Trust that your team wants the best, and is willing to work for it. You can inspire them to greatness. It takes time, but its worth the wait.
Here’s hoping that you have enjoyed our discussion about how to begin building a dynasty with YOUR team. We’d love to hear what you think about dynasties and what has worked well for you as you’ve begun to assemble and develop your team. Please let us know about your journey and how the team is responding to your efforts.
Michael Beach is a Leadership Development Coach and Speaker in the Twin Cities of Minneapolis and St. Paul. Michael loves to help CEOs, Leadership Teams, and Business Owners with the development of winning culture, strong leadership teams, and the building blocks of a future dynasty in a wide variety of industries. If you’d like more of Michael’s business thinking, visit the Michael Beach Coaching & Consulting channel on Youtube! Keep an eye out for Michael’s upcoming book on business and leadership best practices.