If Nick Saban Was Your Manager: The Recipe For a Winning Team

By: Joe Crisara

The Recipe For a Winning Team

Now, everybody always says there’s no ‘I’ in team, but there is an ‘I’ in win, because the individuals make the team what it is, and how they think and what they do is important to the team.    

— Nick Saban

There are a lot of great sayings and famous quotes about how winning is all about the team, and not about individuals. And there’s some truth to that.  But you’re really getting only half the story with that approach. You have to take it one step further and adopt the mindset of Nick Saban – who just happens to know a thing or two about building winning teams.

The truth is that teams are made up of individuals, and if you don’t know each of those individuals inside and out… their strengths and their challenges… their hot buttons, their values, and their personalities… then you’re going to have one hell of a time trying to get all those unique individuals to form a cohesive team that works together and gets results.  When you finally do, you’re on your way to building a winning team because you’ve built a winning culture first.

There are three steps in creating a winning culture…

Step #1… Know each of your player’s strengths and weaknesses as well as you possibly can.

Step #2… Communicate the unique role on the team and how you expect them to contribute.

Step #3… Put them into a position to succeed.

The Recipe For a Winning & Profitable Team

Great coaches don’t just coach their people because they like them and they want to be nice to them…

The primary reason coaching is an incredibly effective business skill is because it’s the most effective way to develop your talent and build a team that gets results.

You’ll hear many people who say that an employee’s personal life is their business and that a manager shouldn’t cross that line by showing empathy about personal issues that might affect performance. But actually, the opposite it true.

Coaches that get to know their people use the daily victories, challenges and routines their people face both at home and work as a chance to strengthen the relationship with each performer to gain respect, trust, and credibility.

A great coach takes the time to get to know each person individually, the challenges they’re facing in life, what drives them, what their unique skills and talents are, and help them connect those things to the goals and objectives of the team – and the company as a whole.

It’s a true win-win-win situation.

Great Coaches Don’t Use Generalities

Trying to coach by assuming that you can manage each team member in the same way makes about as much sense as thinking that every your customers are all interested in buying the same things from your for all the same reasons.  You have to be relevant in the way you are making your request of your team or they won’t think the information applies to them.

You can’t sell that way – and you can’t coach that way, either.1

It’s lazy coaching. Even worse, it’s a recipe for failure.

Coaches who know their team members on a deeper level not only help their people become more effective, but also use each individual’s unique situations and characteristics to tailor how they teach and motivate their team.

When you coach his way, you can shape your lessons and assignments around a particular person’s strengths and challenges, helping them continually improve and work in a way that if both effective and meaningful to them.

As a result, each team member feels that you care about them on an individual level. They know that they’re not just a cog in the machine or a number on a spreadsheet to you.

And when an employee feels that way, they’re more loyal, coachable, and productive.

Creating a Win, Win, Win

Great coaches always look to create a win-win-win situation.

  • Win for the individual people on the team

  • Win for the team as a whole

  • Win for the organization & fans or clients of the team

When you take the time to get to know individuals on your team professionally as well as personally, then put them into situations where they can create value, you’ll notice that a team dynamic naturally begins to form.

The unique characteristics, strengths, and talents of each person on your team combine to create a team culture.  A culture where everyone on the team cares for each other as individuals and learns to “pick up” your teammate when they need it.  

Coaches who create this type of culture leverage the uniqueness of the individuals to make a stronger, more productive team.  The individuals win because they feel valued and understood – and they get to work in an environment that is meaningful and fulfilling to them.  Also with the team culture based on the core values that have emerged, the coach does less work and the team helps hold each other accountable instead.

The team wins because all of their individual traits are combined in a way that compliment each other, making everyone more effective.  And the organization and their clients win because teams that work together in this way are happier employees, have less turnover, and provide great service!

A special opportunity for you…

On Thursday, June 23rd 8pm eastern time we’re holding a special live Hour of Sales Power session called 21 Core Values of Heavy Hitters, and you’re invited to join us as a guest at a very special price.

These coaching calls normally cost $89, but if you join from the link in this article, you’ll get in for free!

Click here now to reserve your seat for the Hour of Sales Power before it sells out!

I want to hear from you…

Have you ever had a manager who went to the effort to really get to know you as an individual? How did it impact your work? Share your thoughts in the comments.