HOW TO WIN A CHAMPIONSHIP
I wrote this as a speech over a year ago. It was inspired by Elon Musk and I've pasted it word for word. It is an account of some key aspects to which I focused on in the building of a championship-minded program from 2012 to 2017. I wanted to be able to tell people in 2015 how to get to the top while I was in the trenches trying to make it happen at that time. The italicized text were talking points. Enjoy
Written Fall, 2015:
Here is what I understood three years ago as I set out on my quest and I also have a few of what I didn’t know to which I know now.
What I knew
Work super hard
Begin with the fundamental truths and reason up from there
I chose to learn the various energy systems of the body and found ways to creatively expand those systems to take athletes to new levels they hadn’t dreamed. I chose to learn the fundamental principles behind technique, implement acceleration, and force application and work from there, etc.
Does something really make sense or is it just what everyone else is doing?
It’s more difficult but it’s worth it. I stopped doing what everyone else was doing... I found what was unique to my situation and built from the most fundamental of truths.
Take risks while you are young
Failing now affects only me. Failure has helped me grow and learn. If I fail now, I can pick up and restart without hurting anyone else.
Be rigorous in your self-analysis
No one has been more critical than I am of myself. I always seek a better solution to each decision I make, continually reevaluating.
Constantly seek criticism particularly with your friends
Surround yourself by people who can be honest with you, people who don't have any interest in your success or failure.
Take the approach that you’re wrong. Your goal is to be less wrong.
There is not a single decision you will make that will be right for everyone. Spend time finding what decisions are the most right and ultimately, the least wrong.
Really like what you do
You don't have to like everything that you do, but you do have to like some of what you do very, very much. There has to be a reason you wake up and invest your life in what you do.
Never give up. Be dead or incapacitated before failure
When success is the only option, nothing can stop you.
What I didn’t know
Focus on what is going to make a difference
I asked myself, "what I am doing creating a better program?" It was important that I create a product of service. I set out to be that much better than everyone else.
Have a high pain threshold
Your happiness will falter and disappear at times. Failure will do that to you. But hopefully, eventually, happiness will return anew.
If enough voices are speaking doubt, you’re doing it right. Especially if they say it can’t be done.
Attract great people
There will be more obstacles than you can imagine
Refer to the coaching lessons.
Failure is part of the process
Sometimes it feels as if nothing is going right. Learn and grow.
Consistency and persistence
It is difficult to stop progress towards the inevitable if you treat your ultimate goal as simply what is going to occur. Consistent progress. Persistent commitment to the goal.
Minor successes overtime begin to snowball and carry more weight
Never underestimate the ability for small victories to contribute to the bigger ones down the road. Success begets success. Near fall entices the knockout.
You actually should hold others to the standard to which you hold yourself
Never apologize for holding people to a greater standard than they're willing to hold themselves.
When you devote yourself and your life/well-being to the success of the program, which is what will attract others
The following are a few phases I shared with or team just a few years ago identifying what we addressed and how we proceeded to make change or emphasize a particular focus throughout our development.
Phase 1 (Disrupt what was once acceptable and establish what is now acceptable)
Implement scientific training principles
Additional training hours
Grow the program (recruiting)
Begin defining the future
Establish higher expectations
Phase 2 (Foundation)
Establish the new norm
Identify poor leadership and good leadership
Build a culture
Establish a leadership structure throughout programs
Speak to the people, speak to their hearts
Find the ones who believe in the team
Servant leadership: Define what it is. Live it. Demonstrate it.
Earn respect amongst the conference.
Have representation nationally.
Phase 3 (Believe)
Carry ourselves like champions would before we ever are
Believe we are champions before we ever are
Believe in the training. Become involved.
Stop making excuses for why we can’t and start coming up with reasons why we will.
Use our weaknesses as strengths
Fight for every spot like our career, our teammates, our family depend on it.
Reward the masses for what we need and what we want.
Rely on the leaders who steer the boat
Phase 4 (Respect and Celebration)
Travel like we deserve
Compete like we have earned
Become a nationally ranked program
Establish a dynasty and continue it with our values
Elicit fear amongst the conference
Show great sportsmanship and congratulate others
I ask you this, why are you here, why are you training?
I ask another, do you believe we can win? Do you think if we do not believe we can win that we will ever get there?
It has been a long, difficult road. Overall, I'm glad I set upon this journey and hope to help others find their path to success.