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Row the Boat

Thoughts From the Coffee Table: “Our team failed so much last year, so much, that we had the opportunity to become successful.”

P.J. Fleck, coach for the Minnesota Gophers, is motivating. Dynamic. Unflappable. And he is giving every particle of his being into making this team a winning team. He is teaching them to Row the Boat.

We throw around failing as a positive concept all the time, but it never feels good when it happens. Coach Fleck is working hard to get his team to all row in the same direction, with the same focus and drive. And he is making forward progress, if not as fast as Gopher fans would like.

His statement above, before the annual bitter rivalry against the WI Badgers, made me stop, rewind and replay until I could get it right. It inspired me. It made me think. It gave me hope.

The Gophers came out strong.

And then felt more failure. They lost 38-17.

P.J. takes it on his shoulders.

“I apologize to our fans for not being able to get it done…It falls on my shoulders. 100 percent of it. Nobody else. Not staff, not players, me. I did not get it done for our fans…”

We will all fail multiple times. We can learn from it if we wish.

But win or lose, it always helps our spirits stay strong, and our hope alive, knowing someone is rowing right beside you.

About the author, Michael

I am an executive leader, sales trainer, and author, with over 25 years of experience delivering motivational speeches and training sessions to audiences worldwide. I have a unique range of experience, from my beginnings as a Catholic school teacher to managing hundreds of people and hundreds of millions of dollars as Vice President of US Sales for two global medical device companies.

In 2016, I published my first book, Tell Me More, to share my leadership mantra. Through a strategy of active listening and observational questioning, we become better leaders, better sales people, and we can deliver on phenomenal customer experiences. Through this podcast, we’ll see how the Tell Me More process is at work in the business world today.

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