At the start of the draft pick week in October last year, Eagles GM – Football Operations, Neil Daniher said “Our strategy is to build a team capable of challenging for a premiership in the mid to long term and we’re not going to compromise that position by trading away our early picks. Those three picks in the top 30 are pure gold. We believe our strategy of building from beneath is the way to go”.
I reflected on Daniher’s comments when reviewing the Eagles win/loss record this year. They won their first two games and then went on to notch up 17 wins out of 24 games. Wasn’t this meant to be their rebuilding season?
To see West Coast now playing for a spot in the 2011 Grand Final is a great outcome for a mid to long term strategy. I then thought about how many companies, who are also going through their own rebuilding season, could learn something from the Eagles.
So, I wondered: What does it take to succeed in a rebuilding season?
1. Talent. To rebuild anything, you must first have the talent to do so. Whether the talent is you or someone else, you must recognise the opportunity for improvement and act on it. Your business is not going to simply rebuild itself, it’s going to take people, talented people. Your job is to identify who the talent is and build upon that.
2. Belief. The number one indicator for success lies with your internal belief system. Do you believe you are going to win the game? Do you believe you are going to get the job? Do you believe you are going to exceed your sales quota? Do you believe you are going to lead your team to victory? Do you truly, deep down, gut-checked, know with all your heart, believe you can rebuild or rebound? If you don’t believe, why even waste your time. Not believing only leads to losses. Some may be small, some may be big, but over time not believing in yourself and your abilities will only create disappointing failure. Take the time to list out WHY you believe you can accomplish whatever your goal is. Do it now! Please. Reflecting on the “why” will help solidify your belief.
3. Seasoned Coach. (John Worsfeld – senior coach for ten years) A coach is instrumental in the success of rebuilding anything. Having a mentor or leader that can effectively teach and coach, motivate and inspire, demonstrate and set the example for the team, sets the tone and amplifies each persons individual talent and belief. The coach is the nucleus of success. This is the person who creates the game plan and calls the plays. A coach’s job is to showcase the talent, make decisions for the team, make mid-game adjustments, and do whatever it takes to win. Who is your coach?
4. Backup. This is probably the most overlooked piece of the puzzle. In football, you have several strings of backups, but in business, very rarely do you have a back up for each person. Think about it, or more specifically, think of someone in your office who does something instrumental to the company’s success; do they have a back up? Do you have a back up plan for when someone gets hurt (sick, laid-off, quits, goes on maternity leave)? Back-up your people, your talent, your team, your coach, and your hard drive so you can keep the momentum going.
The Eagles didn’t win a right to the 2011 Finals because of dumb luck. They won because they had genuine talent, they believed that they could, they had an experienced coach leading them, and a back-up plan in place.
The season to rebuild is NOW. Not yesterday, not tomorrow, right now.
Are you the talent? The coach? Or the backup?
Identify the role you plan to play this rebuilding season and partner that with your belief, so that you can win.