I had a dream—with a pre-emptive apology to Martin Luther King Jr. I had a dream, a dream that had me tossing and turning in bed all night.
I was driving to college in mid-August ready to begin another football season for the University of Massachusetts. I was in my fifth year, and knew a lot more than I did as a freshman. A few broken bones set me back a tad on the NFL draft chart, but since I enjoyed the game so much I pressed hoping to have my name embroidered on the back of a NY Giant jersey.
I pulled into camp not knowing if the head coach was expecting my return since I had fulfilled my scholarship obligations the previous four years. But I was ready to play, and I came to play. I was now the oldest guy on the team and much wiser. And, I was the quarterback. My injuries allowed for a fifth season.
I had my “speech” to the team already formulated in my head. This was very much out of character since by nature I was a silent QB who seemed to be content with “getting hurt.” (Broken ankle – busted collarbone – dislocated shoulder)
Here is what I said to the room full of big guys.
“If anybody does not have it firmly established in your head that we are about to enjoy an undefeated season, than I invite you to pack your bags now and return to the Jersey Shore and order up a couple more cold ones.
Linemen: If you give me more than 3.5 seconds to throw the ball I will throw it to the receivers. And we will go undefeated.
Receivers: If you break from the line on time and catch the ball when I throw it to you, we will go undefeated.
Running Backs: When I call your number … run like hell and don’t stop running. If you do, we will go undefeated.
Me? I will hand the ball to the running backs, throw the ball to the receivers, and call the plays designed to win the game. If you protect me and do what you are supposed to do, we will go undefeated.
Defensive Guys. Do what you do best (whatever that is) as long as you do it between the goal lines. Keep the opponents score below 30 points and we will go undefeated.
Now, let’s go play us some football.”
End of dream. I never did make this speech in 1968, and I regret not doing so. And now, as it is getting tougher and tougher for me to touch my toes, I have to believe it is too late to make a comeback and finally wear that Giant’s uniform.
But it is not too late for you to make your speech.
A new season will be arriving soon. The year 2012 has a new slate of games for you play … to win or lose.
Here are three questions I have for you prior to the opening 2012 season:
- Are you and your players committed to winning? Every single player? At every position? Every single game?
- If everyone on your team performs their assignment as they have been drawn up, will you win?
- Are you confident enough to make your speech — and mean it to your very core?
Ask your players if they are “in” or “out.” If they are not “in,” they are “out.”
I had a dream last week. I hope your dream is to make 2012 a winning season, if not an undefeated one. It is not time for you to wake up yet. Make it happen.
PS. If you are interested in learning how my 2012 Inner Circle Sales & Marketing Club can help you reach your goals, send me an email to firstname.lastname@example.org I will fill in the blanks so you can make an intelligent decision.