I love college basketball. My son played in high school and I quickly learned that it was exciting, fast paced and the players give 100% effort in every game.
NCAA's Final Four starts Saturday-3/31 and ends on Monday-4/2. The NCAA has 68 teams compete in March Madness out of 346 and they have to fight their way to the Final Four. Then, in just a mere 48 hours, a national champion is crowned.
The business world is a 365-day-a-year version of March Madness: intense, competitive, lots of losers, very few winners and one champion in every industry. Both are “games” of strategy, goals, and a lot of hard work.
Whether its college basketball or business, there is something that separates a true champion from the rest of us. But what is it? Often people think it is talent. But, most of the players in the Final Four have that talent and drive…then what does it take to not just be a player, but be a winner?
Well, here is the answer on a silver platter: Success boils down to which team makes the fewest mental errors. Yes, it is mindset that separates the champions from the pack…and this is true also in business.
Create a Mindset for Winning
The college and (professional) coaches know that mindset wins the game every time. Just ask the head coach for the University of South Carolina men's basketball team, Frank Martin how he got to the Final Four: “Attitude comes first,” Coach Martin said. “We got to have guys that are going to believe in our mission, that are going to believe in what we want to do. Once they believe, then we can teach them the technique. It all starts with our mindset.”
NCAA tournament teams are doomed to fail on the court, under the bright lights and in intense competition, if they've only prepared themselves physically, but not mentally. And yes, to have a championship caliber team, the best team coaches know they have to heavily train in the area of mindset. It’s what will win the game.
Business Owners and Executives Must Consistently Work on Their Mindset
Yet, very few business owners and executives work diligently on their mindset to win their game and this big mistake is costing them millions and millions of dollars. It is the difference between winning and losing in all aspects of their business. We do know that mental mistakes tend to happen most often under pressure. Be it in the Final Four or in your conference room, when the pressure is on everyone needs a proven way to think clearly, minimize mistakes and turn on that winning mindset.
In 2007, after decades of research, world-renowned Stanford University psychologist Carol S. Dweck, Ph.D., discovered a simple but groundbreaking idea. To achieve success, you need to understand the power of mindset. In her bestselling book, Mindset: The New Psychology of Success she proved that success in business, sports, and almost every other area of human endeavor, can be dramatically influenced by how we think about our talents and abilities. In other words, with the right mental approach, you will win in the important areas of your life.
A Positive Mental Approach Leads to Success
What Dr. Dweck found out is that people with a fixed mindset believe that their traits are just givens. They believe they have a certain amount of brains and talent and nothing can change that. On the other hand, people with a growth mindset see their qualities as things that can be developed through their dedication and effort and it is an ongoing process.
So, this weekend, while you are sitting down, relaxing, maybe having a beer or two and watching these amazing college athletes in the Final Four, do some self-reflection and ask yourself, how you can improve your mindset. If you want to be on the fast track, I strongly urge you to hire a coach.
Yes, just like all the college and professional sports teams, we need someone outside of ourselves to assess what type of mindset you really have (fixed or growth) and how to best get past those destructive, self-limiting beliefs.
Then, and only then you can become the champion you always wanted to be.
Coach Ellie is an award winning, Certified Business and Executive Coach based in the greater Boston, MA area who works closely with owners, partners, and C-suite executives. She teaches businesses in a variety of industries how to handle their team and how to work cohesively as partners. Contact Ellie for more information on team coaching in Boston, MA, or call (978) 844-6349 to set up your free 15-minute consultation.