Try THIS Leadership Lesson From The NFL Playoffs

NFL Leadership Lessons Michael Veltri

Were you part of the millions of people who watched Sunday’s NFL playoffs to determine who goes to Super Bowl LIII on February 3, 2019? Whether you are a fan or not, you probably heard there were two BIG games played over the weekend.

There were missed calls by the referees, questionable decisions by the head coaches, and supremely gutsy plays by the participants on all four teams. The bottom line? Two teams won and two teams lost.

If you look for them, there are many leadership lessons from those two playoff games. Among the turmoil, ups-and-downs, excitement, and disappointment from Sunday, this one leadership lessons stand out the most:

Leadership Blinders: You know those small “screens” attached to the side of a horse’s bridle to prevent it from seeing sideways? They’re called blinders. They keep the horse forward-focused, prevents distractions, and creates massive momentum. And whether you manage an NFL team (ownership, coaches, and players all help manage a team), manage your own company, or simply manage yourself, you must put on your “leadership blinders” to ensure you don’t lose track of your goal. That you don’t let outside influences (like blown referees calls, freezing temperature, and obnoxious fans) distract you from the task at hand.

Over the weekend, the NFL task at hand was to win a football game and move on to the Super Bowl. For you, it might be to get a promotion, or to land a new client, or to finally make a new career move. Whatever it is, if you are distracted and/or focusing on what’s going wrong in your businesses versus focusing on what’s going right, you will not achieve your leadership and life goals.

So put on your “leadership blinders” and try these three simple steps to help leap your career, company, and community forward:

Leadership Blinders: Try These Three Simple Steps

Step 1. Forward-Focus: Get super clear on one business goal you want to attain in the next 30-days. Write it down somewhere you can see it daily like this, “By February 28, 2019 I will achieve 150% of my sales quota.” Or, “By February 28, 2019 I will hire three new employees to complete my new management team.”

Step 2. Prevent Distractions: I’m not going to tell you to stop looking at your distracting cell phone — because you won’t. Practice completing each and every task through to completion before moving on to the next. Instead of replying to a text that just came in while you were looking at new jobs on LinkedIn while on a work conference call that you sort of have to pay attention to, try this: Batch your calls/meetings, e-Communication, and “focused work”. For example, I’m most creative in the mornings and prefer to do my “focused work” then. So I do a 30-minute e-Comm check (email, social media, etc.), then focused work for two hours, then jump on phone meetings, etc. In the afternoon, I switch it up a bit. The important thing is I don’t multitask — I see each task through to completion before moving on to the next.

Step 3. Create Massive Momentum: Your energy flows where your focus goes, so focus on what’s going RIGHT with the business goal you created in Step 1. above — do not focus on what’s going wrong. Objects in motion tend to stay in motion, so find the little, incremental daily wins and build on them.

Try these three steps to develop your own unique leadership blinders and watch your results in business and life soar. Just like the two winning NFL teams on Sunday did. They had a very specific goal (win!). They didn’t let obnoxious opposing fans, freezing temperatures, and horrible referee calls distract them from that goal. And they looked to stay in massive momentum to keep the ball and control the clock.

And you can successfully apply the same principles in your business and life too. If you have questions, comments, or other innovative ways to grow as a leader, leave a comment below or hit me up on Twitter @mpveltri. I’d love to hear from you!

From life or death decisions on the battlefield to the boardroom, Michael Veltri draws on his background as a battle-hardened business executive, decorated U.S. Marine veteran, and cancer survivor to teach CEOs and senior executives better decision-making skills that deliver stunning results. As a professional martial arts instructor, Veltri blends the fluid and flexible qualities of the Japanese martial arts with bleeding-edge business savvy to bring a completely fresh perspective on decision-making skills. His inspiring leadership keynote speeches and breakout sessions deliver practical tools that can be used immediately to increase productivity and deliver bottom-line results. Learn more at: