Poverty is a wonderful motivator

Have you ever wondered why so many successful athletes come from poor areas? Is it because poor areas have better athletes than wealthy areas?

The reality is, it’s not because poor areas have better athletes than wealthy areas but rather, people from poor areas have less options than those from wealthy areas (at the very least, they have less good options).

The person from a wealthy family might start off playing basketball but if things don’t go well, they easily change to tennis, baseball, golf, soccer etc. If the next sport doesn’t work out right away, they can switch to yet another sport (or another activity).

The person from the poor family most likely doesn’t have the option to try golf, or tennis etc so if they want to be successful, they must stick to what is available and work harder.

Who is going to be more successful at a sport (or at anything), the person who bounces from activity to activity until they find the one that is easiest for them or the one who works to overcome the obstacles?

If it seems that this post contradicts the previous post about it being acceptable to quit, it really doesn’t. The key is, narrow the options down to what you can be successful at, and then stick to it in order to overcome whatever obstacles might come in your way.

Success requires determination and frequently, having too many options available to us, takes away the need for this determination.

While this is true in athletics, it’s also true in business and in life!

Have a great day!


Winners never quit…or do they?

We have all heard the saying “winners never quit and quitters never win” and we tend to take it as gospel but the question needs to be asked, is this true?

Should we keep doing something that isn’t working because we are too proud to admit it doesn’t work?

If we are selling an obsolete product, would it make sense to quit selling that product and find something better?

If you are using a formation for your team and it’s not working, should you continue to use it and try to force success upon the formation or change the formation to something better suited for your team?

To be successful, you need to devote your resources (time, money, energy, people) to things that can work. If you try to be everything to everyone you end up being nothing to everyone. Figure out the best use of your resources and quit the other things

Have a great day!


What if we could start over?

If you could start over again, what would you do different?

If you are a realtor, if you were starting over, would you take a different approach to selling houses or to finding clients? Would you specialize in a different type of real estate (commercial as opposed to residential)? Would you market in a different way?

If you are a business owner, would you run your business differently if you were starting from scratch? Would you be in a different business?

If you are a coach, would you manage your team differently? Would you be a coach if you had to start over?

If you are an attorney would you approach your clients in a different manner? Would you practice a different type of law?

Are you doing things a certain way simply because that is the way you have always done them?

If you were to start over again and would do things differently, would it make sense to see if you can do things differently even though you might not be able to start over again?

How often do you review your procedures to make sure they make sense and are up to date as opposed to simply reviewing the procedures to make sure they are being followed regardless of whether they make sense anymore?

I believe everyone should review EVERYTHING they do on a regular basis and keep doing what works and what makes sense and get rid of procedures and policies that aren’t working or don’t work but that you have been doing just because you always have?

If you would do things differently if you could start over again, see if you can change the way you do things even if you can’t start over again

Have a great day!

See what is and not what was

Too often we see what we expect to see and not what is actually happening and this “vision” is clouded by our memories.

In athletics we see it all the time when someone was a star as a 10 year old but as they grow older and others catch up to them, we still think of them as a star even though the reality is others have caught up and frequently surpassed them. Even though the player is getting beat on a regular basis, the coach still remembers them as the player who dominated when they were younger and isn’t able to look objectively because of their performance when they were younger. A new coach comes in and looks at things with an open mind and might wonder why that player was ever on the field. This happens in professional sports as a player gets older and might have lost a step or two. We want to see them do what they used to be able to do but they can’t do it that way anymore so while their performance has gone down, we sometimes still think they are doing the same thing as they used to do because that is what we want to see.

When evaluating people or situations, do everything you can do to look objectively at what is currently happening and not what you want to happen or what used to happen.

This might mean bringing in someone from outside your organization to take this objective look.

Make sure you are seeing what is actually happening and not what you remember used to happen

Have a great day!


Do something important

Some people work very hard to become expert at certain things but it’s important to realize that just because you do something well, doesn’t necessarily mean it’s important.

If you are a soccer player, you might be a great keeper and that is important. You might be a proficient goal scorer and that is important. You might be the best on the team at lining the cones up to make a straight line and while it’s wonderful you take pride in doing something well, that doesn’t mean it’s something that is terribly important.

If you are going to take the time to do something well, you might as well make sure what you do well is important. If it’s not important, at least make sure it’s something you enjoy but don’t mistake the fact you do something well with meaning it is automatically important.

Some people enjoy doing things that are a bit different and there is nothing wrong with that but in a work environment, spend you time doing things that are important as opposed to doing things just because you do them well. It will make you much more effective

Have a great day!


Productive or simply active?

There is a huge difference between being productive as opposed to simply being active. We all know people who seem to be in a state of constant motion but deep down, they don’t really accomplish anything

Some managers are impressed by the person who is first in the office each morning and the last to leave. They work through their lunch break and seem to always be busy. However, what really matters is not how many hours they put in but rather did they actually accomplish anything in those hours.

I would rather spend two hours being productive than ten hours looking productive and accomplishing very little.

Are you productive or just active?

Have a great day!