KMP Blog:  February, 2020.                                                                          David Applegate, Safety Manager


Continue to Win

The Super Bowl is over which means football season is over; and I am sad.  I love to watch sporting events, especially football (and baseball but I have to wait a while because that season will start the first week of April).  I loved playing sports when I was younger.  Now, I just find myself watching games, reading about all the players and sometimes studying different coaches and their strategies.  One team that peeked my interest during this Super Bowl season was the Kansas City Chiefs.  They were one of the teams in the very first Super Bowl and then again in the fourth.  When they played in the fourth Super Bowl, in 1970 against the Minnesota Vikings, the Chiefs won 23 to 7.  And now 50 years later they won again.  My thought was, what team can afford to win a championship every 50 years?

During my studies I have discovered that there is one challenge more difficult than winning which a successful coach faces and that is: can they continue to win!  Olympic champion Athea Gibson addressed this very issue when she said, “In sports, you are not considered a real champion until you have defended your title.  Winning just once can be a fluke; winning twice proves you are the best.”  I am guessing that anyone can point to a single victory they once had.  However, it takes more than one win to make a great coach.  In fact, it takes continued winning and positive performances.

One other issue I have discovered about winning continually is this:  it is extremely difficult.  This is such a difficult task to do that some teams often hire consultants to help them.  One such consultant is Bruce Ogilvie; I want to share with you some major points he made when he wrote an article in an issue of Success magazine to help coaches achieve success.  I believe that some of his ideas will help you as a Leader of an organization, or as a Coach of a team or as a Superintendent of a work crew.

Make a Change.  Every winner’s temptation is to continue doing things exactly as before.  But that is a flawed approach to success.  Use the momentum you have gained from past successes to continue to change and grow.

Reward the Unrewarded.  Every team has unsung heroes — people who were underappreciated for their contribution to the team’s success.  Find these people and do your best to reward them with praise and further opportunities.

Do not Dwell on Yesterday’s Victory.  If your focus is on what’s behind you rather than what’s ahead, you will crash.  Yes, celebrate the victories, enjoy them briefly, and then look forward to all that is yet to come and the challenges that are in front of you.

I would venture to say that nearly anyone of us can point to one great win that we have experienced.  But what makes a great coach or leader or Superintendent is to win continually.  And what are the results of a team or crew that continually wins?  From my point of view, when a team gets a few wins under its belt, it creates a positive attitude and momentum.  When a team gets a few seasons of wins under its belt, it has tradition.  Then instead of the coach or Superintendent having to go out and find players that are true winners, these true winners come looking for them.  And that is the desire of most every coach and Superintendent!