I get this question a lot during presentations to companies or associations, so I thought I would dedicate some time to it. I get asked or told, depending on the person asking the question. Why sport psychology and what does it have to do with business? Now generally I answer with a series of metaphors like making a big sale is hitting one out of the park or you know that question is a real curve ball. Mostly people get that our business language and sports language often dovetail. That’s when we can focus on how to build your company using the athlete within you
Sometimes I talk to them about working with their customers especially after a big NFL or college game. What used to be talk around the water cooler now takes place there, on Facebook and any place people communicate with each other.
After I have done this we proceed to talk about the Mental Game and how it will help them. Right now however I want to go a different route, a more direct route if you will. If you don’t understand why sport psychology works for you in your business world, please ask this of yourself. Why wouldn’t you want to be an athlete? Train like an athlete and succeed like an elite athlete? You see, elite athletes are your best example of who you want to be like.
Let’s try this for logic. If you looked at your job as if it were a sport, what would change? Certainly it would be more fun. You would want to win the Super Bowl or World Series every year. You would prepare for everything with passion (The Fury). You would prepare for each meeting and there would be no question that you would strive to be the best.
Work ethic would be great. You would train for success. Mental preparation and even physical preparation would be critical to your success. Right now I am doing some work with a training company, reviewing their business mental toughness program. I review the online test answers their students are giving. I am somewhat shocked how many of their employees see this course work as meaningless because all they want to do is sell like they have been doing for years. They don’t want to prepare, they don’t want to learn anything new. An athlete would be shocked by their attitude.
Great athletes are always in the game. They are focused and don’t get distracted. The best of them handle stress and even use competition to bring out the best in themselves. They also practice a lot. They practice everything they do that occurs in a game or might transpire in a game. How about you? Do you prepare for your presentation like a champion? How about sales calls or negotiations? Do you rehearse until it is perfect or just good enough and then wing it? Athletes are the best prepared individuals I know. I’ll give you just one more important factor in why I focus on the mental game in business. Athletes make great team mates. Great teams are made up with great athletes. So in building your team, in creating an atmosphere for success within your company and maybe even more importantly leading the team like a great coach, wouldn’t you want everyone to at least have certain attributes of an elite athlete? Building your team with the mentality of a great coach with people who have the drive for success of elite performers will produce tremendous results for you and your business. Be the coach and provide the leadership to train your athletes, so that they have the mental game for success. Of course if you would like some help, you know where to find me.
These are the conversations I had with people on Facebook and Twitter. It made the game even more fun. Thought some would like to listen in regarding the Seahawk Super Bowl Victory and the Mental Game
It’s Super Bowl Sunday. Less than 5 hrs until kickoff. Seattle Seahawks vs Denver Broncos. My two favorite teams. I worked with the Broncos on their first visit to the Super Bowl. I have a lot of roots in Denver. This is the first time I’ve wanted a different team to win. So I ask the question. Will it come down to Xs & Os? Might I suggest that it is really about The Mental Game. Which team will be calm under pressure? Which team has the mental toughness to excel? Will Manning shake Sherman’s confidence? Will he even pass in that direction? These are the difference makers. You know, no matter what level of play, it’s always the mental game.
I did say it was all about the mental game.
I’m just about that Rainbow, boss. http://t.co/YHFP5Ij4PB” This is a Skittle thing. But it is one of the things that will be iconic about the game.
Congrats Seahawks and 12s. Great game tonight. Totally dominated. It really did show how when a team is mentally prepared the difference it makes. Seahawks preach the mental game. It’s part of their weekly focus Should be everyone’s. Go Hawks!
(From my FB Friend Steven) Mike, mental preparation before the game is so important, but what struck me tonight as I saw pictures ot the Denver players on the sideline in the 3rd & 4th quarters, was mental collapse. The point were a player decides his team is going to lose, & simply ceases to try to win. How does one prepare a team to fight to the finish?
(from my friend Karin)It was clear early on their faces, they were done.
(My comment back to Steven) I saw that as well. I think it has to do with conviction. A belief that it really isn’t over until it’s over. One of the key components of mental toughness is perseverance. Can you keep trying when the wheels fall off. Keep in mind that Manning set a completion record as did Thomas with receptions. But not everyone could when I look at Hawks I see team. Broncos have great individuals.
(Steven’s reply) Yes CONVICTION, but also individual PERSEVERANCE plus COMMITMENT to the team, which is why I so much like their mantra, “WHY NOT US?”
(my reply) Agree. It’s what I work with on all of my clients and teams. Same with business clients. Not everyone gets cooperative competition. But as we both know with conviction, commitment and perseverance most things are possible. Not to be left off is trust. Trusting coaches, teammates and staff. Doesn’t matter if it’s playing football, business, medicine or driving a car.
It has been interesting reading the media reports today on the game. Most, not all of the dislike of the Seahawks is over. Blame of course being thrown at Peyton Manning, which is OK as he can handle it. Better to be thrown at him. If it was thrown to a receiver it would either be dropped or they would fall down after the catch. The line of course couldn’t stop it. Peyton is the real deal. It was a game. A loss and butt kicking, but in the end just a game. His character never in doubt. Everyone should read Richard Sherman‘s account on how Manning sought him out to see how his injury was. Credit Manning and Sherman for recognizing that even as it is the game, their is still more to life. My son saw a report in NYC that the Seahawks bought the game. Now that’s one I would have never thought of. Preparation for next season according to Carroll has already begun. Victory definitely goes to those who are mentally prepared. Parade is on Wednesday. Take off a day or two and let’s start getting ready for next season. The one thing I can’t get enough of is Mental Preparation – BOSS. Go Hawks!
Until I moved to the Seattle area 15 years ago I was a big Bronco fan. I got my start in Sport Psychology in Denver. The first team I did any work for was the Broncos. But after a few years watching Mike Holmgren turn things around here, I started following both teams. When Pete Carroll arrived and I started watching him carefully, I read his book “Win Forever” and I went all in. The biggest post game story I heard was from Richard Sherman. Sherman wanted to acknowledge his respect for Manning. Manning came up to him to make sure he wasn’t hurt badly. After a crushing defeat when you can care about your antagonist, you are really something. This story came from Sherman himself. For those who think that this articulate young man via Compton and Stanford is a thug, think again. Years ago Manning walked off the field without shaking hands. He learned a lesson. So did Sherman. They will never approach things the same, but both are of high character. Manning has taught a lesson he perhaps never intended.
To everyone who cares to listen. This is what many of my posts during the Super Bowl were about. How the Mental Game effects outcomes. As you will see Richard Sherman talks about this being a chess match and not checkers. Checkers are who is faster, who is more physical. Chess is can you out think your opponent, can you play the entire board as one not as individuals. Are you prepared to the extent that you can play with confidence, calmness and conviction the entire game. http://dailym.ai/1jc023k The more we read, the more we learn about how these two teams prepared mentally for the game.
OK< I’m done with the Super Bowl talk. It’s been fun. A lot of interaction with people. Obviously, my addenda is to promote mental training. I really do feel that instead of the focusing on how physical or how fast the Seahawks were in the game, the focus is on how mentally prepared they were vs the Broncos. Add to this that Seattle has been working on Mental Training for at least the last two years weekly, is important. This team was built on the ideas of cooperation and competition. It shows the importance of emotional intelligence. It is the mental game. OK> I’m out.
What Team Building in Sport offers the Business World!
Great Sports Teams have always had great General Managers. Is your life ambition to be GM of the year? Then see what team building in sports will do for you. If you head a project, a business unit or the entire company, you want that title of GM of the Year, because it means your efforts are creating meaningful relationships, products and reputations.
I don’t often post about The Mental Game Programs, but I thought this one would be of value. I think many of the components of this program are critical to businesses and there are things that offer transference to the business world.
Team Building for Businesses, Non Profits and Direct Sales Organizations. Let me show you why the sports world offers you great insight into how your organization can function at the highest level even under pressure. Great teams and GM’s create an atmosphere that instills Cooperation and Cohesion even in a competitive work environment. Not every team starts with good chemistry, but every team can have it. Every wonder why people who played on sports teams miss them so much? What if you could create a corporate culture that no one ever wanted to leave? Let me help get your organization moving in the right direction. Respect, admiration, discipline, cohesion and even competition are all attributes of good teams. A competitive environment is not in opposition to a good working environment. Respect and Cohesion are easier to achieve when missions and goals are clearly defined. Learn how to utilize everyone’s emotional intelligence to further your organizations mission. The secret however is how to succeed through both cooperative and competitive environments. If you think about a football or soccer team players must work together to succeed while at the same time compete for playing time with their team mates. Good teams thrive in this competitive environment. In the corporate / business world employees find themselves working on projects or in teams where they must both cooperate and compete with others. Learning to thrive in this pressurized can have great effects on an organization. Every wonder why people that played on sports teams miss them so much? What if you could create a corporate culture that no one ever wanted to leave? Let The Mental Game help get your organization moving in the right direction. Respect, admiration, discipline, cohesion and even competition are all attributes of good teams. A competitive environment is not in opposition to a good working environment. Respect and Cohesion are easier to achieve when missions and goals are clearly defined. Learn how to utilize everyone’s emotional intelligence to further your organizations mission. These activities are fun, intellectually stimulating and can have a tremendously positive effect on your company or organizations direction. Events are flexible and designed to work with you mission statement and goals.
So if your ambition is to be GM of the Year, call me today and let me prepare an individualized program to meet all of your company or team needs. I will work within your budget to produce a memorable event with lasting meanings. Team Building by Mike Margolies and The Mental Game I have been helping build teams for over thirty years. I do team building events and presentations for all types of non-sport organizations. I have programs that will blend into your event or I can put an event on for you. Most Team Building workshops offer insights into how a team succeeds through cooperation and many organizations play down the competitive nature of the business environment, yet this is the reality for most organizations. Promotions, project selection and salary are dependent on being competitive. Building Competitive Cooperative Teams. These events can be Keynotes, 1/2 day events or full weekend retreats. Please check my SpeakerMatch Profile for other business programs.