Here is some early feedback from participants of the inaugural Unleashed Summit held last week…
“Dan Weedin’s Unleashed Workshop was time well spent, and I highly recommend it. Dan brings lots of energy, humor, sage advice, and a great interactive experience together with real world applications and brainstorming. I am already looking at my business — and life — differently. Plus … Captain Jack’s Rules are words to live by!”
In football, the offense focuses on “possessing” the football. That means avoiding costly interceptions and fumbles. Without the ball, you can’t score. Because of that, coaches teach ball security to their quarterbacks. But that doesn’t mean they won’t occasionally throw the ball deep.
Sometimes a coach and a quarterback need to take risks. Throwing the ball deep has a 75% negative possibility. The play can result in either a sack (loss of yardage when quarterback tackled); an incomplete pass; or an interception (bad). The one positive is a quick strike, home run play for a touchdown. It’s the ultimate risk-reward play.
I’ve met too many business owners and executives that play too conservatively in their “game.” Fear of losing their own proverbial football keeps them from taking risks like professional development; coaching or mentoring; hiring employees; and/or creating new products and services. For individuals that don’t own a business, that fear of the “interception” keeps them from seeking new careers; asking for a raise or promotion; seeking out internal opportunities; and/or accepting new challenges offered to them.
Ball security is important, but winning the game is more important. In order to maximize your potential and talent, you occasionally need to cast away fear and throw the ball deep. If it’s “intercepted,” then pick yourself up, go play defense, and get the ball back. If it’s complete for an exhilarating “touchdown,” you may have just catapulted yourself, your career, and your business to new heights. And that’s worthy of a touchdown dance!
“Once we believe in ourselves, we can risk curiosity, wonder, spontaneous delight, or any experience that reveals the human spirit.”
~ e.e. cummings
Unleashed Executive Experience ~ A transformational experience for business owners, executives, and entrepreneurs to maximize their talents, skills, and company. The first 4 savvy executives are registered! What do they know that you don’t? Check it out and learn more!
Just putting my Extra Points message to use today…
I need to re-schedule my normal Weedin Unleashed for today. It will now be on Wednesday just for this week. I hope you will plan on joining me! Sorry for the inconvenience, yet things happen. See you then!
This week’s focus point…Cigars, Donuts, and Forgiveness
I enjoy a cigar and donut every month. Not together, of course; yet this weekend both were enjoyed. I’ve been assured by my doctor that a monthly indulgence of both isn’t going to be detrimental to my health. In fact, they may have a very positive effect to the spirit.
I exercise about 3-4 mornings a week. I used to be avid about it. I’d go 6 days a week and spend hours in the gym. Now I’m pretty happy if I get 45 minutes in. If I miss a day, that’s okay. I will get the next one.
It seems that we live in an ever increasing world of “all or nothing.” I hear from people on diets that require strict regimens with little to no tolerance for flexibility. I know of folks that consider it a personal tragedy if they don’t get in 6 days of exercise every week, to the point of giving up other things. And in so many cases, we humans are more hard and unforgiving of ourselves than we are of friends and family that make mistakes. Heck, I even hear from football fans bemoaning a team’s win because the style points weren’t good enough!
Life is short. Enjoy the ride. We only come around this way once. Every day and it’s experiences are new, so cherish them. Everything in moderation. If you mess up, learn and have a short memory. Don’t try to make up for things undone, just do them next time. Apologize when you make a mistake, forgive others, and forgive yourself. And eat a donut every once in awhile just for good measure without regret.
The filling of the donut and of your life are worth it.
“I never smoke in excess. That is I only smoke one cigar at a time.”
~ Mark Twain
Unleashed Executive Experience ~ A transformational experience for business owners, executives, and entrepreneurs to maximize their talents, skills, and company. The first 3 are registered! What do they know that you don’t? Check it out and learn more!
So you’re a business owner or executive and you want to handle a crisis with ineptitude and enrage your important business partners, all your employees, and your target audience, right? Then study today’s press conference by NFL Commissioner, Roger Goodell.
I’ve been a huge football fan and followed the sport since 1974 when I was 9 years old. Over the decades, we’ve all witnessed crises occur for what has become the premier sport in the United States. Never have we witnessed the erosion of trust that has happened only in the past few months, with a climax of a fiasco such as today. I have no doubts Roger Goodell is a smart guy. He just didn’t show it today.
Here’s how to mishandle a crisis when you’re the head of an organization and your world (whatever that might look like) is watching…
Start 15 minutes late. Really? You set the press conference. Show up on time. Not a good way to start.
The opening statement was as obvious as a ham sandwich. We could have all probably written it ourselves. Instead, make a brief (3 minutes) statement apologizing for past errors of judgement and open it up for questions.
Avoid answering Yes/No questions. When Goodell was asked if he had spoken to NFL sponsors, specifically Anheuser Busch. He never uttered the words yes or no, and proceeded to spin the case around to a point where everyone was confused and a follow up question about his communications had to be asked. His response? “You will have to ask them.”
Keep referring to your past statements. The commissioner answered almost every questions with, “As I just stated,” or “As I’ve said before…” Here’s the deal, Roger. You lost your right to fall back on past comments. You need to just keep answering what you have in front of you.
Be the ultimate spin doctor. One journalist asked about the comparison to his ruling on New Orleans Saints Head Coach Sean Payton after the infamous “Bounty Gate” scandal. Goodell blasted Payton for lack of control and suspended him for a year. When his lack of control was called into question, he began spinning like a Wolfman Jack in his prime, by not only avoiding any comments about the Saints and Payton (which was the question), and again explaining that he was going to fix everything.
Keep referring to your nameless “experts.” Goodell kept referring to the league’s “experts.” These are the experts that didn’t see a problem with him interviewing Ray Rice with Janay Rice (the victim) in the same room. These are the “experts” that are advising the NFL on how to move forward with a domestic violence policy. We should all feel better…
Deny, deny, deny. When asked about the report that the Atlantic City hotel confirmed that they were never asked for the video in the elevator by the NFL, Goodell said they had tried several times. So let me get this straight, the NFL says it asked on multiple occasions and was shot down. The hotel says they were never asked. The TMZ reporter in the crowd said they got it with one request. Someone’s lying. It’s clear, yet Goodell simply skirted the issue.
Avoid clearing up conflict of interest questions. Rachel Nichols of CNN is really good at her job. She asked about the independent investigation that appears to have more bedfellows than Wilt Chamberlain on a good night back in the day. She drew a correlation about conflict of interest with owners and law firms. Instead of hitting that straight on, Goodell seemed outraged that Nichols would call into question the integrity of a former FBI chief.
Show them you’re sweating. Speaking of Nichols, she really got under the Commish’s skin (which seems to be getting thinner by the day). You could tell his anger simply by his facial expression. You could also hear it in his voice when he tersely repeated her name, Rachel, when addressing her. I’m thinking there’s not going to be a Christmas basket sent from him to her this year.
Pick a time when you might be least hurt. How about holding a press conference on a Friday afternoon? That way, sports radio can’t blast it the next day. College football and NFL games take place over on the weekend. By Monday, it’s horror will have dissipated. This one may not…
Heck, throw in a clown from the Howard Stern show that makes a scene right in the middle of the press conference and is dragged away screaming “Not the elevator…don’t take me to the elevator!” (Mocking the ray Rice elevator incident) and you have the makings of a huge calamity. That was a nice scene…NFL bouncers dragging someone away in front of the nation.
Crisis communications is critical after a catastrophe. Ask former BP CEO Tony Hayward who publicly exclaimed that he only wanted to “get my life back” after the Gulf oil spill. He is toiling somewhere in Siberia now and it took BP years to regain its reputation. This press conference (Goodell was silent for the past 2 weeks, other than a CBS News interview) was a great opportunity to fix some real problems. Unfortunately, Mr. Goodell’s performance only exacerbated them. Football pundits and NFL players on Twitter widely panned it. The results are exploding in real time across social media platforms and television.
Crisis communications mean everything when it comes to protecting your reputation and brand. Your employees, your supply chain, your business partners, investors, and community count on you to respond quickly, be candid, admit mistakes, and express a plan. Although Commissioner Goodell did do some of those things, his ability to respond to questions with empathy and believability have deeply damaged his credibility. It will be interesting to see if he can survive this. In your business, you may not have the same chance.
Here’s one hint. Practice. If Goodell got advice, it was either not good or he didn’t execute well. You need to be prepared to face the music when it’s your crisis. Make sure you don’t get flagged for unsportsmanlike conduct detrimental to your business. Goodell just got 15 yards and maybe more for his…
This is your last call for next Tuesday’s inaugural Unleashed Summit being held at the beautiful Suquamish Clearwater Casino Hotel. We have a great group already coming and YOU would add to it (that is if you’re not already one of the group!).