I’m sitting here watching the FSU v Oregon game and, while I am quite sickened at the 45 (Oregon) to 20 (FSU) score, I am struck by Oregon’s ability to see opportunities (over and over again) and just continue to be in the right place at the right time to capitalize on them (foresight).

Seizing an Opportunity

The Oregon players are consistently within an arm’s reach of a fumble or a bumble – so they are capitalizing on the big errors and the tiny ones - those that would be potentially harmless against another defense.  It is as if they are watching the game unfold in slow motion, or even setting it to “pause”, and then moving their players into strategic positions to take advantage of the opportunity.

Capitalizing on Opportunities is a learned, strategic skill….not luck.

But, wait, there’s another side to this.  The FSU side.  They are “undefeated” for the season, and although they are not favored for the win, they are and have been a very successful and effective team. So, what is happening in this VERY MEANINGFUL game?  What is their role in providing the opportunity to the other team (their competitor)? After all, they are making the errors – over and over again…that are creating the opportunities…

So…let’s recap:

1.  An error is made, which

2.  Presents an opportunity

But, that has little meaning …

If there is no one there to…

Capitalize on the opportunity!

This happens in business, too.  Business owners are unfocused. Or cocky. Or don’t really have a clearly defined plan or roadmap for their company – so they never get anywhere – they stumble and fumble and fall.  As for the competition – anytime you don’t fully understand your competition and the market you serve – an “error” is made – and you effectively provide an opportunity for those competitors and ultimately, hand them the ball. 

On the flipside, without the clarity and focus that results from strategic insight and planning, the opportunities present themselves, but we don’t have the resources to capitalize on them.  So,

By the way…the score is now 59 to 20 – I’m devastated…I literally cannot watch it anymore.

The Learning

It’s not all bad news, though.  There is Opportunity in the learning from the errors.  FSU today will be licking their wounds – as I am today.  However, I am VERY sure that FSU’s coaches and players will watch the game – and the errors – over and over again. 

They will assess, re-work, define new plays, practice, practice, practice and – here’s the key – move forward.

So, although they have stumbled, there is great learning in this loss.  I’m sure there is plenty of blame to go around, but, when working as an effective team – there will be no blame, no finger-pointing, and no judgment. 

There will, however, be accountability in the learning, adjustments to the playbook, and forward thinking and planning. 

We have that same opportunity today, as business owners and as people, as we move forward in 2015.  We have the blessing of hindsight, YAY!  It is okay to look backwards, when the intention is for learning and adjusting, so you can move forward in a very powerful way.

So, let's move forward in 2015 in a very powerful way.  Let's seize the opportunities and learn the lessons that we have been so blessed with in 2014.

No judgment….no blame… no finger-pointing - only accountability, adjustment of the playbook, and vision for what is possible, based on what we've learned.

2015 is going to be a GREAT year for us all!  I just feel it….and I am grateful!

Congratulations Oregon for a game well-played. And I still love you FSU and look forward to what is next!

Please share with us some of your "Team under Pressure" lessons

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