On media day before the 2017 NCAA Division 1 national championship mens football game, Alabama Head Coach Nick Saban was asked "What do you do during the game?" His answer reveals the key to how great leaders get the most out of their teams. With 5 national championships under his belt, Saban is one of the greatest leaders in the history of the game.
Saban (forgive the paraphrase) said that he tries to do everything possible to be ready for the next play, and to ensure that his entire staff of coaches and players are also thinking about what happens next and what they will need to do. By having a laser sharp focus on what happens next, and teaching other to do the same, every person involved with the effort is looking forward, anticipating what will happen, planning to use their talents and training, and following the example of their leader.
With this kind of focus, there is no time for regretting the last play or wallowing in errors or bad calls. It's impossible to keep your mind on what you can do next to make a difference when your thoughts are trapped in the past. And this isn't the time for skill building and practice. All of the preparation must be done by the time a player is asked to perform.
When it's game time, Saban is removing every obstacle from achievement for his team. He's tasking them with the things that they have proven they can do, and removing as much distraction and confusion as possible so that their singular focus can most likely lead to the best result.
Manage your team by training for the right tasks, and then ensuring that they can drive to success when it comes time to do them. Limiting distractions and keeping a sharp focus lead to precise execution that scores on the field and in your business.