As seen in Capstone’s Spring Edition newsletter:
Team Building The NFL Way
By Roland Williams
“The Vince Lombardi trophy only weighs 7.5 pounds, but it takes an entire organization to lift it.”
Dick Vermeil, Head Coach, Super Bowl Champion St. Louis Rams
In my second year in the NFL, I was fortunate enough to win a Super Bowl with legendary Coach Dick Vermeil and the St Louis Rams. Known as the Greatest Show On Turf, our fast-paced offense entertained fans, confused defenses and lead the charge to becoming the only team in NFL history to go from last place to a Super Bowl Championship in one season. To this day, I can still remember the first time I held those precious 7.5 pounds of NFL glory in my hands. Coach was right; It truly took the entire organization to make our championship dreams a reality.
In life after football, I travel around the world teaching organizations and individuals simple strategies for extraordinary team cohesion and production in fiercely competitive environments. In my spare time, I like to write. To help on your team-building journey, here are three simple NFL-inspired tips 100% guaranteed to make a difference on your team:
Tip #1: Set "Super" Standards
Each season in the NFL, 32 teams set their sights on one goal; to win the Super Bowl. Despite 31 teams failing to reach their objective each season, the clear pursuit of the highest standard of excellence imaginable allows coaches and players to be extremely focused and efficient. Each day, they know exactly where their team is trying to go. They know exactly what their role on the team is. Their daily focus is to simply align their actions to do their job at a high level. Question: What is the highest standard of achievement possible for your team? Have the “coaches” and “players” on your team made an honest commitment to pursue that standard this season?
Tip #2: Build A Healthier "Locker Room"
According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, “U.S. companies lose $3 billion a year to the effects of negative attitudes at work.” No matter the size of your team, when teammates don’t believe they have an environment to express their frustrations and challenges, strong resentment and work inefficiencies soon follow. During my time in the NFL, negative attitudes from teammates were the biggest threat to team chemistry and productivity. When players felt their needs weren’t being heard or addressed, they always used the locker room as a place to vent and turn other players against coaches and ownership. The best coaches prevented this unhealthy behavior by always encouraging disgruntled players to speak up and talk about concerns before they became negative. Question: What does your team do to maintain a healthy environment where honest communication is encouraged and appreciated?
Tip #3: Celebrate Small "Wins"
In the NFL, the road to a Super Bowl victory is a long one. Training Camp. Pre Season. Regular Season. The Playoffs. Intense practices. Unrelenting film study. The best teams keep themselves energized by creating an environment that recognizes individual and collective growth along the way. From a quick high five to a monthly cash bonus, when players are enthusiastically focused on improving in small ways, big victories soon follow. Question: What does your team do to celebrate tiny, incremental victories critical to your team’s long-term goals?
Roland Williams is an NFL Super Bowl Champion, Team Building & Performance Expert and Proud Dad who works with organizations and individuals strongly committed to excellence. Capstone IT is excited to be working with Roland to help us improve our team! To learn how Roland can help you, visit www.RolandWilliams.com or call him at 805.409.0622.