The weekly video has dropped! All it takes is 60 seconds to get up to speed on a handful of sports topics that could come up in small talk this week. (P.S. if you want to get these Sunday night follow Talk Sporty to Me on Instagram)
To be clear, I’m not asking for your impression of the Seahawks. I’m asking what impression you make on your colleagues – before you think they’ve noticed anything.
You can’t wait for a big moment to show colleagues what you can really do. They’ve already figured out what you’re capable of… or at least they think they’ve figured it out.
Consider how this works in a locker room, that’s where players make their first impression with coaches and teammates. The way they show up for work gives coaches and teammates insight into their work ethic, practice habits and overall demeanor long before they ever get on the field and get a chance to put up number or deliver results.
Here’s what Seahawks head coach Pete Carroll said about wide receiver, Jaron Brown:
“From the first week he was with us he just seemed to have a handle on what it takes, and what’s important, and how you do the job and how you work. He’s never wavered. He’s just been that the whole time. His performance has followed.”
That’s an NFL head coach talking about a wide receiver, but it could just as easily be your manager talking to you. Or could it?
How do you show up?
How aware are you that colleagues (teammates) notice how you approach your job?
How much do your actions impact what THEY believe you’re capable of?
If your colleagues aren’t impressed by the impression you make, they’re not going to give you the chance to impress them with your productivity or results.
The way you show up in daily interactions gives colleagues a first impression. Show up consistently in small talk and in the way you talk to people. Becoming an Influential Conversationalist means you’re in position to show not just your consistency but leadership characteristics. If you don’t believe me – read the book. And keep reading here for more parallels between the Seahawks and business communication.
Jen Mueller is the sideline reporter for the Seattle Seahawks. Yes, she talks a lot of football, but she also hears a lot of business lessons buried in the weekly press conference and interviews. Throughout the season she’ll provide a few of those insights and demonstrate how sports conversations can improve business communication. Follow Talk Sporty to Me on Instagram for even more business communication strategies and ways to make sports talk useful in business settings.
Leadership happens in the little moments, when you think no one is watching, when you think it doesn’t matter.
Leaders show up in little ways every day. You can be the leader that makes a difference at work, in your community and with your family by using these tips and practicing leadership.
This Is What Leadership Looks Like
Seattle Seahawks linebacker Shaquem Griffin has inspired millions of people around the world. He’s achieved tremendous success in football without a left hand. It was amputated when he was young.
As a result, he’s not only gotten used to doing things one-handed, he’s excelled in his chosen profession. That wouldn’t have been the case if he spent all his time worrying about the challenges he might potentially face. He trusts he’ll figure out how to deal with them.
To Shaquem, being one-handed isn’t a challenge, being successful as a rookie in the NFL is a challenge. The same one that every other rookie faces.
Leaders focus on their ability to overcome obstacles instead of the roadblocks they create.
Shaquem (pictured above) is still a rookie and that means there’s a lot to learn. It’s like on-boarding a new employee for an entire year. Every week a rookie sees something they haven’t seen before. Keeping them in the dark and letting them figure it out on their own isn’t an effective strategy for getting them up to speed. A mistake by a rookie could prove costly to the whole team.
The same thing is true in your group, office, company, board, committee, etc… it just doesn’t happen in front of 70,000 screaming fans.
Here’s how you practice leadership – communicate clearly, simplify the message and don’t leave it up to colleagues to figure it out on their own.
If you’re ready to practice leadership wherever you are in your career, join the Practicing Leadership email tribe and get monthly tips delivered to your inbox. Follow Talk Sporty to Me on Instagram for exclusive content on how to approach face-to-face conversations that help you practice leadership skills.
Jen Mueller is a badass at business communication because she knows how to have meaningful face-to-face interactions. She also knows that’s the only way you’re going to advance your career. Jen’s approach is based on nearly 20 years in sports locker rooms as a sports broadcaster. She currently serves at the Seattle Seahawks sideline radio reporter and is a member of the Seattle Mariners television broadcast team. Hire Jen for your next training: Jen@TalkSportytoMe.com