Be A Pro

“Inspiration is for amateurs. The rest of us just show up and get to work,” says the painter Chuck Close.

Waiting for the moment to be right, for the conditions to be perfect, for the idea gods to strike you…it’s probably not going to happen.

If you really believe in inspiration, then schedule time for it. Make your morning writing or thinking block, or your nighttime routine the time you wait for inspiration. Otherwise, just get to work.

Kitchen Table

There is no substitute for for good face to face (even on the phone) talk.

Talk = trust, and talk = shared experience. If you have a conversation with someone you now have a shared experience. Your perspective might not be exactly the same, and you may disagree, but you were both there.

Same goes with teams. The more we can face head on the things we do, want to do or be, with clarity and concern for each other the more the caring and shared experience grows.

Does Everyone Know?

Oh yeah, everyone thinks that’s the right thing to do.

Everyone says it’s true.

I’ll get everyone together and we’ll get it done.

Is “everyone” really all of the people? Who’s important, and who is optional to be in the group of everyone?

If you need everyone on board you better be sure that everyone knows what’s happening. And if you don’t need everyone then just ask the people who are crucial.

Elite Humans

Are you one with yourself? Do you know who you are and what you care about?

Can you answer that about your team?

How do you talk about yourself and the relationships you have both to yourself and to those involved?

Do you take time to answer these things on paper?

You’ll find that clarity rolls right out of your pen. Try it.

Find Your People Without Looking Too Hard

Look for the happy people.

Happy people are more productive and better to be around.  I don’t have the research at hand, but this is true in my experience.

Happy does not mean, giddy, laugh-at-every-little-thing people, to me it means people who are satisfied, who somehow communicate that they know that everything is not ok, and they are ok with that.

Happy means satisfied, in a good way.  Dissatisfied is the realm of a constant, “I wish things were different,” approach to the world.

One can work to be “better” and not be dissatisfied, for sure, but meanwhile I aim to be comfortable with the process.  It’s a happier way to be.

Presenting, The Present

Everything happens before it happens.

Your perception of “the present” likely is actually around things that have already happened or are about to happen.

Is it possible to Live In The Moment? Sure, but the moment includes time that’s gone by and things to come.

Let’s not get caught up in whether we’re doing a good job of being in the present or not and enjoy whatever the experience is, with the people we’re with.

Teams only go around once.

Running Alongside

Even within a great team, each individual is running their own race.

She might also be a part of a relay, running the team’s race, but for sure she is running her own race.

Our starting lines vary, our pace ebbs and flows until we find a rhythm.

Encouraging each player to run well–to be healthy and efficient–while still being able to cheer the others on–that’s one way coaches can help move the entire entourage down the course.

Usually there are a lot of moving parts–which is better than parts that are frozen in time.

Find ways to cheer for the team and for every racer.

I Wish My People Took More Ownership!

Coaching Is Hard. Fact.

Wanting both to control “all of the situations” and have teams in which people were making suggestions and giving input…these two things struggle to coexist.

Are you really giving your people room to own things on your team? Do they have actual ability to impact change? Do you have a history of soliciting input, asking for ideas?

If not, can you really expect them to own this thing that they don’t really have a piece of?

Who Gets To Contribute?

Who gets to help shape your program?

Who doesn’t get to? Who is supposed to show up and shut up?

Who MUST contribute?

Think about how you want your program to be, to become, to feel to those who come near it.

Think about it, write it down, and share it.

You’ll probably think today’s version is lacking, or even terrible, at some future date. That’s ok. Think about it, write it down, share it and see what happens.

Who Do You Work For?

The ones who matter.

In pro sports, players often talk about thankfulness for the team owners who gave them a chance, and the fans who show up for them. They work “for” them.

The owners are up the ladder. They have control and steer the ship on the highest level. They set compensation and get to decide direction.

The fans are more fickle and demand the best each day (especially when they are in the stands), they lift players up and criticize freely.

In what ways are your players owners and fans in your world?