Bridging Leadership Lessons from the Workplace and Those Experiences Shaping Today's Youth and Tomorrow's Leaders
(This post was originally titled, Husker Chant, and was posted on September 10, 2009.)
While I am in no way a Husker fan or supporter, the Head Coach of my son's 5th/6th grade football team is a Husker fanatic. Complete with the Tommy Frazier reference on his license plates. (Kids, go google Tommy Frazier and Nebraska football and you will understand.)
The coach introduced a pre-game ritual that he borrowed from his beloved Huskers. It is a powerful message to send to our nation's future about development, fairness, and sportsmanship. It doesn't ask for an advantage… just an opportunity. A chance to grow and develop to allow them to compete. It basically talks about the right way to win and if you lose, you still need to keep things in perspective and thank your opponent for competing and congratulate them on their victory.
Typically, the Coach would lead, and the team would repeat the line. The first paragraph was spoken solemnly and with respect. The last paragraph is shouted with emotion enabling the young players to feed off it and as they gather in the huddle with the speech rising to the climax, the last sentence is emphasized with an exclamation point after each word. Then a simple breakdown of "(Team Name) on 3" and they would hit the field.
This year, a couple of our "seniors" (a.k.a. 6th graders) have taken upon themselves to lead this ritual at the end of practice, assuming the leadership role that had previously been performed by the head coach. Another sign of the development of not only young players, but young citizens that understand the power of leadership.
THE HUSKER PRAYER
Dear Lord, the battles we go through life,
We ask for a chance that’s fair.
A chance to equal our stride,
A chance to do or dare.
If we should win,
Let it be by the code,
With our heads and our honor held high.
If we should lose,
We will stand by the road
And cheer as the winners go by.
Day by Day!
We get better and better!
A team that can't be beat!
WON'T! BE! BEAT!
Our young people are always watching, learning, and growing. They are nourished by what they are fed and what they consume. Each day we have opportunities to provide “healthy” options that will help them grow into successful, well-balanced, contributors to our society. Finding those moments to interject life lessons and build excitement for those around them have lasting impacts Beyond Today.
Tom Brown - a husband and a father who is simply trying to make a difference. Using my experience as a Manufacturing Executive to connect leadership from the boardroom to the hardwood to help teams grow and develop to make a difference in the lives of others.