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As 'black Monday' Nears, Teams Must Make Careful Choices


birdz4i
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Those of you who follow me on Twitter know I love to read and discuss leadership ideas and concepts. One of my favorite new experts in this field is Daniel Pink, who wrote a great book about the powers of motivation called "Drive: The Surprising Truth About What Motivates Us," and has a new one coming out soon called "To Sell is Human." Pink encourages business leaders to embrace change and examine what really motivates people to produce great results. Leaders should look for new and innovative ways to sell their ideas -- as all of us are trying to sell something every day of our lives.

What does Pink have to do with football? A great deal.

The day after the regular season ends has become known as "Black Monday" in the NFL. While 12 NFL teams will be getting ready for the playoffs and a possible Super Bowl run, the other 20 will have to make decisions about the future. Many will start making changes right away -- some of which will be for the better, some of which will be for the worse. Up to 10 teams might even fire their head coaches. "Black Monday" is a horrible but accurate name for a day that will affect many families. Losing a job is not the best way to start the new year.

The people who run most teams want their team to become great, to be one of the 12 taking aim at theSuper Bowl. But there's more to becoming great than simply wanting it. As Pink points out in "Drive": "Greatness and nearsightedness are incompatible. Meaningful achievement depends on lifting one's sights and pushing toward the horizon."

To become great, the leaders of these teams must understand how to push toward that new horizon. They must build an organizational infrastructure that is not solely dependent on picking the right coach. However, most teams will continue to be as nearsighted as they were before, believing that simply picking the perfect coach will make all the difference in the world.

In the coming days, we will hear all about coaching candidates like Oregon's Chip Kelly, Washington Redskins offensive coordinator Kyle Shanahan, Seattle Seahawks defensive coordinator Gus Bradley and Arizona Cardinals defensive coordinator Ray Horton. But unless the team hiring any of these fine coaches is willing to set up the right organizational infrastructure, they'll just be making change for change's sake. Teams must find the right leader within the organization.

For an example of this type of synergy, we can look at what happened five years ago with the Atlanta Falcons. Leaning on his business experience, owner Arthur Blank hired a coach in Mike Smith and a general manager in Thomas Dimitroff who meshed in terms of personal character and work ethic. Blank did not want to simply put two friends together; rather, he wanted to blend two talented people who would work well with each other. It was a great move by Blank. Most fans had never heard of Smith before he was hired, but Blank's detailed research showed he was the right coach for his organization. Blank understood that one man alone will never lift an entire team; installing the right infrastructure is necessary for engineering a turnaround.

On Monday, we might see changes made by the Philadelphia Eagles, San Diego Chargers, Kansas City Chiefs, Cleveland Browns, Carolina Panthers and other NFL teams. However, unless the leaders of the organizations making these changes correctly identify their needs, it might all be for naught.

Few candidates will ever turn down a head coaching job, as it's a more difficult gig to land than a spot in the U.S. Senate. Many prospective head coaches fear they'll never get another shot to lead a team, and end up accepting a position that is not the right fit for their style or talent; they often end up failing. Candidates should closely examine their opportunities; they shouldn't jump at the first offer.

Many incoming coaches also think they can be the ones to save an organization. They think their work ethic, theirintelligence will make the difference. But unless the organization is fixed, these coaches aren't likely to succeed, regardless of their talent.

On Monday, pay close attention to what is said by the representatives of teams that fire their coaches. Be wary of talk about schemes and style of play; these are not good signs regarding the likelihood that they'll land the right coach. However, talk of finding the right person to blend into the organization, someone who can lead and inspire, should spark hope for the future.

http://www.nfl.com/n...careful-choices

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Blank gets the credit for learning from his mistakes in the past. But from what I read it was TD and MS hitting right off the bat in the interview. It was reported that TD and MS kept on talking in the Interview for hours. Blank reportedly interrupted them few times and asked if they were ever going to finish the interview. The best thing Blank did was to get out of football decisions and glad he is not treating his QB like a personal friend.

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Blank gets the credit for learning from his mistakes in the past. But from what I read it was TD and MS hitting right off the bat in the interview. It was reported that TD and MS kept on talking in the Interview for hours. Blank reportedly interrupted them few times and asked if they were ever going to finish the interview. The best thing Blank did was to get out of football decisions and glad he is not treating his QB like a personal friend.

Thank you. The Mike Smith hiring was all TD and nobody else.

Dimitroff'd.

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Blank gets the credit for learning from his mistakes in the past. But from what I read it was TD and MS hitting right off the bat in the interview. It was reported that TD and MS kept on talking in the Interview for hours. Blank reportedly interrupted them few times and asked if they were ever going to finish the interview. The best thing Blank did was to get out of football decisions and glad he is not treating his QB like a personal friend.

I'm glad we did not end up with Parcells. We would still be looking for a new coach if so.

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