Growing up in the world of competitive freestyle skiing, you learn very quickly that you can be good with your athleticism, but you need to be even stronger with your mental game. We have all heard the saying about how success in sports, life, or business is 90% mental and 10% skill. I believe that. My success in sports, life, and business have been when I've combined mental strength and preparedness with a foundation of skills.
Winston Churchill once said, "Success is not final, failure is not fatal: it is the courage to continue that counts." These words are powerful. Failure is not fatal, unless you don't get up and you don't continue forward. I'm not sure anyone who has had success, hasn't failed. They have been fueled by it. To help prove my point, here are stories of famous people who have failed.
The World Cup for Soccer is played every four years. Germany was crowned the 2014 World Cup Soccer Champion in Brazil. During the journey to the championship, the USA verses Belgium match was one that inspired the world. As I watched the match, I saw Tim Howard, USA Goal Keeper, apply four leadership principles to rally his team. Tim Howard, American Goalie, faced a never-ending Belgium onslaught for 120 minutes. Howard tallied an amazing 16 saves, the most in World Cup history.
In our lives and in our careers we all have managers, coaches, and mentors. Our goal should be to surround ourselves with believers. It was 1943. There was a color barrier in baseball. Branch Rickey did not believe in color. He believed in talents and skills that would produce a winning result. That was his focus with Jackie Robinson. In 1943, Rickey got approval from the Dodgers Board of Directors to begin the search for "the right man".
Challenges arise in business and life. Many times these challenges create roadblocks. Roadblocks impede progression. Last week I heard an awesome business leader, Paul Anderson, speak on 6 steps to eliminate roadblocks. Step one is to identify the root cause. It's important that everyone involved with the roadblock help to identify the root cause. It might help if you answer this simple sentence, "The roadblock is being created by (insert root cause)."
I had the privilege of interviewing Robert Reiss, author of "The Transformative CEO". Reiss has interviewed over 250 of the world's top CEOs. His new book sums up the top techniques CEOs use to transform companies, reinvent industries, and reboot societies. He also has a weekly nationally syndicated radio and TV show called "The CEO Radio Show" & The CEO TV show. Reiss said, "The transformative CEO is obsessed with company culture, customers, innovation, and leadership."
The other day I was scrolling through my Facebook feed and came across an image that outlined ten things successful people do that unsuccessful people don't. I really liked the list and I thought you might also. Successful people compliment others while unsuccessful people criticize others. Successful people forgive others while unsuccessful people hold grudges. Successful people embrace change while unsuccessful people fear change.
I'm a big fan of the Olympics and the amazing stories that emerge. Each Olympic story teaches lessons we can apply to life and business. Whether it's an individual or team event, the training culture of each Olympic athlete has a big impact on their success. During the 2012 Olympics, there was a tight race for gold between the USA and Russia for the women's gymnastic team competition. As I watched the drama of the event unfold, I heard the announcer discuss the training cultures of the two teams.
Life tends to have ups and downs. It’s easy to be happy when life’s great, but it takes a different approach when you’re faced with a tough challenge. When you're faced with a tough challenge, start moving forward with a positive attitude. You'll need to tell yourself that you’re going to rise of above it, that you’ll overcome the challenge. During a difficult time in my life, I heard the song “Riser” by Dierks Bentley. The songs talks about being a riser. Having a riser attitude will help you positively take on the challenges of life.
I'll start with one question about your business work day, "How many hours do you work uninterrupted? When I mean uninterrupted, I am not just talking about people that stop by your office or desk looking to chat, collaborate, or just ask an important question. There are other distractions or productivity killers that can cause each of us to lose our productivity, distract us, drain our energy, and make us feel like we're running around in circles. Here are seven ways to increase your personal producitivty.
A few months ago, I had the opportunity to listen to six time Olympic medalist and champion Jackie Joyner-Kersee. Jackie kicked off the opening National Athletic Institute Speed Camp. I grew up watching and cheering on Jackie. She is a true champion with a story that inspires each of us to believe anything is possible. Greatness is possible for each of us, we just need to be willing to set realistic goals, work hard to achieve them, and face discouraging times with a smile. Jackie teaches us that in life, business, and sports you have to position yourself to win.
Everyone has moments of creative genius. Marketing ideas that are as big as life and their outcomes even bigger. So, how can you make the creative process and it outcomes more consistent. That's what this blog post is all about. You will learn four simple steps to tap into your creative genius on a regularly basis. In 1972, Alka-Seltzer launched one of the greatest ad campaigns in history. The campaign helped trible their sales and put their brand on the map. They used four simple steps.
Your ability to build strong teams of talented, smart, and engaged team members will make or break your company. It will be the difference between ok results and great results. To build a strong team, it first starts with knowing two truths team members bring to work each day. I've been talking to Ty Kiisel, a good friend and Forbes writer, about these truths over many months. Below is a summary of our thoughts on two important truths that make a positive impact on team member engagement and business success.
Learn two important success factors of great leaders. I believe success in life and business are influenced by persistence and determination. It's always the last 10 yards that are the hardest. It's always the extra effort that helps you discover your real potential. It's the storm before the calm that makes the sunshine meaningful. It's moving forward when others doubt you that you'll find success. It's always finishing, no matter what, that makes the great champions. So many people come so close only to lose the prize because of the lack of persistence and determination.
It's simple. Just apply what you learned during your middle school science project. As you started your science project, your teacher had you start with a few questions and a hypothesis—an educated guess. Your hypothesis would be your starting point for further investigation. Then you moved to the next step which was conducting simple experiments to test your hypothesis. This was the fun part. If your experiment was set up correctly using the scientific method and statistics, you would arrive at validated learnings.
The power of strategy is found in execution. Many of the best strategies and plans fall flat without great execution. I have found that strong execution comes from empowerment and ownership of team members at every level and in every department. What is commander's intent? I've been reading the book, "Made to Stick" by Chip and Dan Heath. In the book they explain a concept called commander's intent. I think there is a lot to learn from the commander's intent concept.
As a business leader or athlete, energy is crucial for your success. Life has ups and downs that can drain your energy. Here are three ways to boost your life and gain more energy. This is simple—get in motion. There are tons of medical studies that show the importance of exercising. It sounds counterintuitive, but the results are amazing. Start now and you'll see the difference. You'll have more energy, be more creative, solve more problems, sleep better, you'll increase your self confidence, and you'll be more healthy.