Back in 2014, Odell Beckham Jr made one of the greatest catches in NFL history.
Fans went wild at this incredible feat of athleticism (which now has over 8M views on Youtube).
But as talented as Beckham is, this feat didn’t just happen out of the blue.
He had actually practiced this particular, one-handed catch.
This is a particular kind of preparation — Daniel Coyle calls it “high-leverage practice” — where you simulate high-stakes conditions.
It’s the kind of practice that sets a performer apart from their peers.
And it applies to you as a founder, too.
Think about the stressful conditions where you need to be at your best:
- defusing a heated conflict between two VPs
- evaluating options in a complex, time-sensitive decision
- responding to push-back and criticism at an all-hands meeting
If you don’t practice managing your “in-the-moment” reaction, your survival instincts take over.
You lose your cool, get defensive, try to please…
…and miss the opportunity to be a great leader.
Want another example of high-leverage practice? Here’s one from the Talent Code blog:
Former NBA guard Steve Kerr was having trouble coming off the bench and performing his specialty, three-point shots.
He tried to fix the problem by focusing on technique, shooting thousands of three-pointers in practice. It didn’t work.
One of his coaches, Chip Engelland, had an insight.
The problem wasn’t the shooting. The problem was the pressure caused by coming into the game cold, without warming up.
So they tried an experiment.
Engelland and Kerr would sit on the bench together, chatting casually. All of a sudden, Engelland would yell NOW!, and Kerr would have to go shoot a single three-pointer, then return to the bench.
A few more minutes of casual chatting, then Engelland would suddenly yell “NOW!” and the process would repeat. For 30 minutes, they would do this, shooting only eight or ten times.
And it worked. Kerr’s game performance vastly improved.
Not because he was a better shooter, but because he and his coach had designed a smarter training space.
I do the same thing with my clients.
Because high-leverage skills aren’t built by reading books or mindless repetition. They’re built over time, through strategic practice and feedback.
What leadership situation do you need to train for?
When you’re ready to level up your leadership, here’s how I can help:
- Founders Evolving Faster. A cohort-based course that helps founders turbo-charge their self-management and leadership skills. Learn more HERE .
- A 1:1 executive coaching engagement. Schedule a “Create From The Future” call HERE. Let’s work together to execute faster on your vision. With a high-velocity learning system, it’s simpler than you think.