How Football Improves Productivity

While you’re probably hoping this article advises you to watch football instead of working, that’s not exactly the direction we’re headed; but you’re close. Instead, I want you to consider how the game of football is played and who all is involved in making those plays happen. If you need to watch a game (or two) to refresh your memory, that’s understandable and we’ll allow it.

So, how can football make the workplace more productive? It happens when managers approach their teams and projects like a coach approaches every game—with the following factors in place, every time:

1. Strategy – Can you imagine what a football game would look like without a strategy in place for every play? (Insert joke here about your least favorite team in the league.) If there were no strategy for a play, then the players wouldn’t know where to run or how to react in each situation. It takes lots of practice for players to learn all the possible plays, as well as for the team to work together to produce the desired outcome.

This is how work should always be approached. No project or goal should ever be attempted without a strategy in place on how to complete or reach it. A strategic approach means having more than one play to reach the desired outcome, a team that understands the strategy, and sufficient practice at making everything work together. 

2. Player Positions – In every game, in every play, each player has a position. They have that position because the coach recognizes each player’s strengths and how best he will benefit the team with his talents. Every team participant should be seen in the same way. A manager will get the best possible outcome when he or she knows how best to utilize the talents and skills of each player to the benefit of the entire team.

3. Communication – It’s not necessary to have a huddle in order to achieve the type of communication needed to make every project run as smoothly as possible; but it might not hurt either. Communication is key in the game of football. The coach is talking to the quarterback, the quarterback is talking to all the active players on the field, the defensive coach is talking to the defensive line, and the special teams coaches are talking to the placekickers, punters, kick returners, etc. Everyone is in constant communication, and that’s simply how it has to be in order for anyone and everyone to know what is going on and where and what each player is expected to do.

Without the same type of communication, it is just as likely for things to fall apart in the office as quickly as a game is lost due to incorrect or lack of information on the field. Regular and consistent communication is a significant challenge for many teams, but you can protect your record by addressing problems early and often.

What happens when you make these factors a part of the workplace on daily basis? You get to do your touchdown…err, productivity dance, of course!


About Author

Amy Day

Amy Day is the Associate Publisher and a contributing writer for Strategy Magazine. She has an MBA in Marketing Communications and Strategic Leadership from Southern Methodist University and has been on staff with Strategy for nearly a decade. She is an award-winning business executive with customer service credentials from the Disney Institute. In addition to editorial oversight, her regular beat includes business, customer service, publishing, and family/child wellness.

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