Thursday, January 18, 2007

The Patriots have the equation for success

You may or may not be sick of the New England Patriots. Hats off to the Patriots who won a game which looked as though the San Diego Chargers squandered numerous chances. Give credit to the Pats who never gave up. Good teams win pretty games and ugly ones.

Bill Bellichick has several key elements that result in success year in and year out. This article by Michael David Smith of Fox Sports scratches the surface of why the Patriots are the team nobody wants to play. Smith points out that some writers analyze the unexplained and attribute their success to "drive", "heart", or "swagger". When Carl von Clausewitz wrote On War, his analysis of great military commanders resulted in resignation of just calling it military genius. Like obsenity, he cannot define it but he knows it when he sees it.

Smith points that the Pats have two key players, one of them being Tom Brady. With the main pieces in place, Belichick manages a 53-man roster and a large coaching staff with delegation, a coherent team philosophy, fiscal responsibility, and in-depth character analysis. To top it all off, Belichick also displays tangible evidence of perhaps the rarest quality among leaders, the ability to listen.

Most good CEO's know they can only focus on one thing at a time. Belichick's players are told to focus on one game at a time while management focuses on the long-term. Management and the coaching staff prep players with game video almost as soon as the last game is over.

You may be sick of the Patriots but if you look closer, there is something to admire.

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