You’ve probably heard the term, “momentum”. It’s a powerful force in science, sports, and business.
So how do you get it started?
We talked about how production, focusing on achievement over mere activity, moves things along. If you’ve got a vision, you have the map you need to drive on to your destination – the realization of your goals.
Bear Bryant said something powerful that applies to momentum:
“Don’t worry about making friends; don’t worry about making enemies. Worry about winning, because if you win, your enemies can’t hurt you, and if you lose, your friends can’t stand you.”
If you are a leader by title, have earned the permission to lead those under your charge, and are creating a productive team environment, you’ll have momentum.
Momentum is like the tide at the beach. When the tide rolls in, you can catch a ride on one of the breaking waves and go farther much faster than you could on your own. When your team is productive, that momentum will carry you farther than you could ever go as a dictator cracking a whip.
Momentum has to be fed like a fire in a wood stove to survive. If you sit long enough and enjoy the ambient warmth of the stove, if you want to keep the feeling alive eventually you’ll have to add more wood. More frequently, as the logs settle, you’ll have to poke and prod the stack to get that dying fire roaring once again.
If you thought leadership got easier as you ascend the levels, take this as a cool alternative to the cold shower of reality and the surprises it brings.
Winning sports teams know the power of momentum. They understand they need to stay rooted in what’s important – those activities that lead to victory. Winning teams have to score. They also have to prevent their opponent from scoring, or at least make sure they do it less. Everyone knows what he needs to do to contribute to his team’s effort to win. And each team member has to want to win enough to overcome the obstacles that will cross his path to the finish line.
If you can inspire and lead a team to think and act this way, you’re a production level leader.
So, go ahead and build that fire. You’ll draw a crowd. Poke it regularly and you’ll keep it burning. Invest in momentum.