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Becoming the Best at the Little Things

It’s that time again. Super Bowl!

So close to commemorating the 1st Super Bowl played with Vince Lombardi’s Packers demolishing the Chiefs 35-10. But it wasn’t always that way for coach Lombardi. In 1960 in the championship game on the last play, Jim Taylor was stopped at the 8 yard line and they lost.

Afterwards, Lombardi told his team, “This will never happen again! You will never lose another championship!” And they never did.

But what innovation could he possibly conceive of to back that up? Coach’s answer? Break the paradigm. He had the most skilled professionals on your team already. What if he started over? What if he took absolutely nothing for granted? And so on the 1st day of training camp he began a tradition standing before the men with a pigskin he said, “Gentlemen. This is a football!” Of course, it wasn’t a joke.

He began a methodical coverage of the fundamentals reviewing how to block, how to tackle, how to hold the ball.

6 months later the Packers beat the Giants 37-0 in the championship. They had become the best at the little things that everyone else took for granted. In total they won 5 NFL championships in a span of 7 years including 3 in a row and the first 2 Super Bowls. Fundamentals! Winning! How's your team doing? Great at the little things?

Related: The Journey of an Innovator Often Ends in Creating a New World