Tony DeMeo

Book Review – “Good to Great”

Good to Great by Jim Collins is a book that is a must read for any leader or coach whether in business or athletics. The book is a  great text about leadership and strategy which is a major part of being a football coach.

     Collins talks about some key principles that relate directly to football. Every coach wants to take his program to the next level, Good to Great outlines a strategy to accomplish this goal.

     Level Five Leader – Collins describes a level five leader as someone with vision, will, and humility. He also says that a level five leader develops a culture of discipline. Any football coach knows that discipline is the foundation of success.

    Get the Right People on the Bus- First who than what You don’t need rules if you have the right people on your team. Take time to hire the right people. Coaching success, in my mind, is based on your ability to surround yourself with good people. When I was named head coach at The University of Charleston the first thing I did was hire the best staff available. Then we recruited the best student- athletes available. Always recruiting character not characters.

    The Hedgehog Concept – Collins “Hedgehog  Concept of maintaining focus on what is important. He talks about the 3 interlocking circles. The first is “What drives your economic engine” what is the source of your income?  The second circle is “Where is your passion” and the third is “What can you be the best in the world”. At UC we talk about “The main thing is to keep the main thing the main thing” or focus on what’s important.

     The Stockdale Principle addresses the idea of facing the brutal facts and still keeping your faith that there will be a positive outcome. Every football team has to face adversity and still stay focused on finding a way to win.

    The Flywheel Principle talks about the importance of accumulation and momentum. A breakthrough can only occur after a buildup. There are no short cuts or quick fixes. You have to get the boulder up the hill before you can seize the momentum and let it roll downhill. Every coach knows the power of “Big Mo’  but the lesson here is the buildup stage to create momentum.

    These are just a brief  bits from a great book, it’s a valuable read and I enthusiastically recommend it.        

Tony DeMeo