It’s that time of year again – March Madness. Even if you’re not a basketball fan, I think you would agree that sports can provide a lot of life lessons. I also believe the best coaches can teach us a lot about leadership.
One of the things I’ve seen great coaches do for decades is rally their teams for a better second half. The insight for me was when I realized that the process I observed from outstanding coaches would also apply in life… and work.
This second half surge happened again in the first round of this year’s NCAA tournament. BYU overcame the largest deficit in Tournament history – they were down 25 and came back to beat Iona 78- 72. Yes, Iona’s shooting went cold, and I don’t know what head coach Dave Rose said during halftime, but I’m confident he did at least three things…
Assess what has happened. What is the score? What are the facts? What is really going on? As leaders, we can ask these questions and others like them: Are we on plan? If we’re off plan, why? Are we on schedule? Are we on budget? As a leader, truth is one of your best friends.
Affirm what‘s working. There is almost always something that is working – it would be a missed opportunity to overlook it. If something is working, acknowledging it affirms not only the activity, but the person as well. Plato said, “What is honored in a land is cultivated there.” If you honor what’s working, you’ll get more of it.
Adjust as needed. If you do what you’ve always done, you’ll get what you’ve always got. If you want a different outcome, you’re going to have to change something. Some coaches are known for their halftime adjustments. What can you change now to get better outcomes?
Are you at halftime on a project? Are you halfway through the month? Are you at halftime in your career?
Assess – Affirm – Adjust and the odds are good you’ll have a better second half!
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