Whether you are a sports team (i.e. Atlanta Falcons) or a business owner, there are some major lessons to be learned from this year’s game.
When you are doing great and seem to have big margins, it is not time to rest. It is time to keep doing what got you there instead of going into “management mode” or “protection” mode. When you cease to grow you become stagnant and lose your confidence. This is when its time to retire. You won’t always be at the same level of productivity forever, but your contribution level doesn’t have to stop. Once you regress to “management mode”, the team you lead follows. Even if you wanted them to “keep up the good work”, they follow their leader. Just like they did when you led them to where your business is right now.
Do you remember the story of the talents? One had “1” talent, one had “5”, and the other “10”. The ones with 5 & 10 were rewarded for using their resource & growth. The one with 1 talent was chastised for only preserving what he had (protection mode).
OK….with pain, back to my Super Bowl lesson. The Atlanta Falcons came in as over achievers and underdogs. They used their passion and energy to rise to the top of the scoreboard. Amassing a lead that had never been overcome before in a Super Bowl history. What happened? Team leadership (coaches, players, etc) changed their attitude to “we got this one in the bag”. Once they decided to try not to lose instead of trying to win the game, it was over. They moved into protection mode. BIG MISTAKE.
They changed from a mindset of going after the prize to one of waiting on the prize to come to them. Their mindset of “this one is in the bank” allowed the enemy (Patriots) to seize the “go after the prize” attitude. When you manage your lead on the scoreboard or perceived can’t fail business success, your teammates will follow. There is no longer a prize to fight for. You are protecting the prize you think is already yours. BIG MISTAKE! When you quit to reap the benefits, you begin to drain the asset. The biggest problem with this is that those on your team that are not yet at the top, exit the race before you have completely passed them the baton. When you stop running the race, those you were teaching to run, lose. Now that is bad leadership.
The Atlanta Falcons do have great, young talent, but wisdom of keeping after the prize from a team that has been there before, is a lesson learned.
Paul who built an organization (the church) that is still growing today (2000+ years), pressed towards the prize until he died. He never had a moment of protecting or managing his achievement. Philippians 3:14
Keep your eye on the prize. When you turn to protect or manage what is already there, not only will growth stop, death begins.