Maria’s Ode to Joy

 In Team Performance

Absolutely Mad In Love

Well, yes, here it is my favorite time of year again. And I sure don’t need to put it in my planner to remember. I love March Madness.

For me, what March Madness does exceptionally well is to bring together the best of leadership and authentic team spirit. And watching how it all unfolds with the unpredictability of the competition brings me JOY. It’s pure poetry in motion.

During March Madness, we are able to watch how 68 teams are put to the test to show real leadership in the blink of an eye while competing under extreme pressure. Ultimately the few surviving teams emerge tested in the sweet 16, the elite eight and finally, the famous final four, and then battle it out for supremacy in one location to win it all.

How Does This Tournament Exemplify The Best Team Work?

  • Selfless play. Players anticipate where to be and where to get the ball so the team has the best chance to score.
  • Presence. The great players show up with heart. They display a commitment and passion for giving it their all in the moment.
  • Pacing. The tournament, for those teams who make it to the finals, is still a possession by possession fast-paced game. To win, they have to play with a strategy for the long haul.

The most successful teams use communication, presence and a game plan for every contingency. Truth be told, the game is pretty simple. But trust isn’t. The greatest teams build trust with each other during practice, in the ups and downs of a game and even off the court. They trust each other to have the good of the team in mind. They trust that they’ll play with their all. And they trust they will go the extra distance.

What Does March Madness Really Mean to You?

Think about what you can do to tap into the inspiring teamwork and leadership that is on display throughout this competition. For starters, here are a few tips to make your work more fun and satisfying in your organization or company:

  • Contribute to more selfless play on your team. Be it, encourage it, reward it.
  • Encourage your team to show up with even more heart. Be your best each time you step into the game and feel greater satisfaction for giving it your all.
  • Experience more success by playing for the long haul. Be a model for sustainability so you can perform best when competition is fierce.

Find Your Joy. And Trust.

Whether you are a March Madness fan or not, more than anything, I invite you to find YOUR true joy. That’s where you’ll make your biggest contributions – and find your most meaningful learning experience.

When you do find YOUR true joy, whatever you do, please don’t be half-hearted about it. Revel in it; relish each joyful moment; and savor the experiences that most delight and inspire you — over and over again.

Joy begets more joy — so go ahead — create more joy for you and everyone around you. It’s a magnificent element to bring to the game of life.