It’s been said that if you want to be a successful leader you should find a parade and get out in front of it.
I was reminded of that quote when I read an article about famous coaches in professional sports. Guys like Bill Belichick of the New England Patriots or Bill Walsh of the San Francisco 49ers. Or basketball giants like Red Auerbach, Phil Jackson and Pat Riley. Or baseball managers like Joe Torre.
This article suggested that while we can marvel at the coaching records and successes, each of those coaches were fortunate to be partnered up with the greatest players of the time in the sports they were playing. In effect, the article suggested, the coaches may be great because they found the “right parade.”
I believe coaching and leadership matters. Coaches help draw up strategies. They define roles. They endeavor to show players how they can be more effective. They can rally the team when it is called for. They can hold players accountable to high standards.
But, at the end of the day, the players must be good at what they do, be striving to get better and believe in the program laid out by the coach.
We have recently gone through the 10 Commitments. We highlighted the importance of working together as a team to achieve safety, to delight our customers, to maintain and operate all of our assets in the best way possible, to efficiently and productively produce the outcomes that lead to profit, and to do all those things better tomorrow.
I think it’s a pretty good plan. I believe if it is well executed it will allow us to win in the marketplace.
But, I’m not confused. I can describe the plan and teach it. But, you will be the team that achieves it. You have to believe it. You have to focus on its effective execution every day. That kind of execution takes an every-player effort.
Are you in?