Let’s face it…we all love to win. The thrill of planning, practicing, and executing to achieve greatness can be downright addicting. It’s a wonderful feeling to witness all of your hard work and dedication come to fruition and personify the difference you were hoping for. But that championship moment, and what’s even more desired…that championship reign, doesn’t come without difficulty. After all, we’re all imperfect people striving for perfection and it’s sometimes a hard pill to swallow to realize that the perfect boss, the perfect employee, or the perfect team just simply doesn’t exist.
But there are core ideals that every leader should adopt to inspire greatness and plant the desire in each individual to strive for the seemingly unimaginable. Here are four ideals to help you redefine perfection and create reigning champions.
It takes more than one star to light the sky
If you’ve ever peered into the night, you’ve probably noticed that it’s impossible to dispel the darkness with just one star. Likewise in your teams, you can never hope to become champions if success is not shared by all, rather than just the few or the one. Basketball legend Michael Jordan once said, “Talent wins games, but teamwork and intelligence wins championships.” If you have to be the star of your team, you might win a few games, but if you don’t build confidence in others you’ll never witness glory.
Championships are therefore achieved only after consistently celebrating the successes of others and routinely acknowledging their contributions. Each team member must feel valued and be given opportunities to lead and to be heard. To build trust and comradery, individual talents must be cultivated and developed through a collective team effort. It takes more than one star to win a championship.
Personal space is your friend
We’ve all heard that famous quote, “If you want something done right, you just have to do it yourself.” But invading your team members’ personal space by micromanaging their every move will quickly destroy trust, creativity, and innovation.
Here’s a more effective mantra, “A leader’s job is to set the stage, not perform on it.” As a leader, you must effectively communicate the vision. But once that vision is set, you should step out of the way and let your team determine how to implement it. Allow your team the personal space and freedom to accomplish organizational goals in their own manner. Yes, you may have to step in from time to time if they’re straying too far, but they must be trusted to act on their own instincts. Then when the heat of the game is upon them, you can trust they’ll make an explosive play.
Failure is a part of the game
Let’s be honest, no one soars among the clouds at all times. There will be days you’ll score that illusive touchdown, and others in which you’ll have to settle for the field goal. And there will yet be other days in which you’ll never cross the 50-yard line. Until you learn to fail with grace, you’ll never learn to win.
One of the greatest mistakes you can make as a leader is to instill the fear of failure into your team. You must certainly set expectations and hold your team accountable, but they’ll expect true leadership from you when the going gets tough. And that means you immediately envelop them with support, expressing your unrelenting confidence in their ability to win.
When team members feel your faith in them, a positive, trusting environment is created in which they feel comfortable taking risks.
Genuine appreciation yields authentic happiness
Never fail to recognize that no amount of success is achieved alone. A genuine appreciation for the contributions of each individual on your team reflects your personal commitment to individual happiness. We’re all unique, and the most effective leaders will hone the ability to recognize each individual’s unique skill set and empower them to be their best.
Create an environment in which everyone has the chance to thrive and you’ll be well on your way to emulating genuine appreciation. Always be flexible to the needs of your team and lead to the individual.
Building a championship team may not always be easy, but redefine perfection and your team will reign.