Thursday, April 2, 2009

Find someone to hold you accountable.

Next, I suggest you build an Implementation Relationship plan.
Identify the ten most strategic and valuable relationships you need to develop in 2009. Who can accelerate your ability to overcome obstacles, get things done, and get you in front of the right people, in less time and with fewer resources? Which relationships will you need to invest time, effort and resources to identify, nurture, and develop? Who will you start with, and when?

It helps to work with someone who will keep you accountable for pursuing your goals. If you don't have access to a professional coach, ask a friend or coworker to help you keep your promises to yourself. They may not bring professional coaching expertise, but they can help you harness your own motivation and keep you disciplined. Share your goals and your plans for reaching them. Ask your "coach" to regularly check in on your progress and make sure you're meeting milestones. Want to thank your volunteer coach? Offer to play the same role for her.

Share the following findings with your coach:
When Roger Evered and James Selman studied the qualities of successful coaches, like John Wooden, George Allen and Red Auerbach, they found that great coaches shared the following characteristics:

• They focused on the development of each player and held a personal stake in their success and well-being.

• They believed in constant improvement.

• They didn’t view success as an individual accomplishment and continuously communicated with everyone who could contribute to a player’s performance.

• They stressed honest, straightforward feedback, and modeled the qualities they demanded from others.

• They remained uncompromising in their approach to discipline, preparation and practice, paying attention to the smallest detail.

• They obeyed the rules of the game, but didn’t let the rules limit their thinking.

• They felt personally responsible for the game’s outcome, but not in a way that robbed their players of their own responsibilities.

• They loved the game and considered coaching a privilege.

John Wooden, the legendary former head coach of UCLA basketball, said, “A coach must prevent, correct or help, and not punish ... He must be more interested in finding the best way rather than having his own way, and be genuinely concerned about his players.”

I'll close with a quote from Ralph Waldo Emerson: “Shallow men believe in luck. Strong men believe in cause and effect.”

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