Coaching Football's "Little Things"

Developing a Consistently Successful Football Program

The Importance of Small Things

Posted by admin October - 14 - 2010 - Thursday

Have you ever gone to a restaurant with someone whose meal cost $8, and watched them struggle over the tip? They have $2 in change, and they know that leaving just $1 might be thought of as stingy. Yet, do they leave $2? Not on your life! That would be too much. Instead they’ll waste 10 mniutes getting change for that second dollar so they can leave $1.50 tip and save themselves 50 cents… rather than “sowing generously” and leaving a little extra.

What would have happened if they’d left the full $2? They would have made the waiter or waitress’s day! Fifty cents may not seem like much… but the message that goes along with it can mean the world to someone. It says, “Thanks, you did a great job. I appreciate you. You’re valuable.” What an opportunity. Small acts of kindness set the tone for the day.

I know this to be true… I saw it today. We won a blow-out yesterday. We were so far ahead that they had a running clock for the entire 4th quarter. Our coaches tried very hard to get all of our players into the game… for at least a play or two. We had 2 young guys waiting on the sideline (who hadn’t been in yet) ready to run onto the field as soon as the play was blown dead. Just as we sent them on, the white hat blew his whistle, held up the ball and announced that the game was over. Those 2 boys were totally deflated. By happenstance (or the Lord moving in my life!) I bumped into one of the boys today as he was walking to class. I took his arm and pulled him over to the side…. looked in his face and said, “Michael, I am soooooooo sorry about yesterday— not being able to get you into the game. I will be sure that next game, you are the first one of the subs that we get in. OK?”

“Thanks Coach,” is all he said… and walked away. Later in the day, one of his teachers grabbed me and exclaimed, “Lew, I don’t know what you said to Michael earlier… but I overheard him in class telling his buddies that ‘Coach J talked to me… with nobody else around!'”

It wasn’t WHAT I said that mattered… it was that I took the time to single him out and give him some special attention!

My question to you, Coach, is: When was the last time that you pulled that “scrub” aside and thanked him for his effort or his positive attitude? Just to let him know that HE is significant to you!—that you know who he is! You can make a kid’s day just by taking a moment to pay him that “2 dollar tip.” and it doesn’t cost you a thing. And, guys… you WILL be blessed!

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