As business owners, we all know that being in business is tough, right? At my Rotary Club meeting, of all places, I learned a new definition of being tough or toughness courtesy of Nick Sabin.
I believe if you adopt this definition of tough, you might just change the game for yourself and your organization.
The speaker at this particular meeting was a four-year starter at the University of Alabama and three-year veteran of the NFL. He spoke to the club members about what it was like to play football at Alabama and for Nick Sabin; it was a motivational speech. It was actually the kind of speech I’m not usually excited about. He started reviewing the five core values of the Crimson Tide football team (I’m not sure he called them core values, or pillars, or standards, but you get the picture).
A new definition of toughness came from his review of the values shared by his Alabama football team.
Frankly I didn’t remember four of the five core values, because I became obsessed with understanding of the core value of being “tough.” (Thanks to a friend of mine, who provided a picture for this blog, you can see all five values.) According to the speaker, Coach Sabin says, “You aren’t tough, if you aren’t coachable.”
He went on further.
You can be the most talented player, smartest player, meanest player, fastest player, strongest player, or most coordinated player, but if you aren’t coachable then you are of no use to the team. Let that sink in. Unwilling to be coached equals being NO use to the team.
To be coachable, you have to be vulnerable and admit you don’t know everything. You have to be able to learn, even when you don’t want to learn. In order to be tough enough to be coachable, you have to be open to input and suggestions. This means even when you don’t like the person giving the input or the way they are making the suggestions. To be coachable, you have to be open to new ways of thinking and doing things. To be coachable, you have to be able to suppress your ego for the good of the team. If you aren’t coachable, you can’t get better. If you can’t get better, you can’t become great.
It takes toughness to be coached. Are you tough enough to be coached? If you are, how about scheduling a discovery meeting with me?
Roll Tide! Rammer Jammer Yellow Hammer! As a Michigan Wolverine, I can’t believe I just said those things!