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Issue 392 - Does Teaching Life Lessons Improve Job Performance? (Jay Wright Part Three)

Woodens Wisdom
Wooden's Wisdom - Volume 9 Issue 392
Craig Impelman Speaking |  Championship Coaches |  Champion's Leadership Library Login



Jay Wright guided Villanova Basketball to the National Championship in 2016 and 2018. An important part of Villanova Basketball's is the consistent practice of Team Chaplin Father Rob Hagan sharing Life Lessons with the team. In Coach Wright's fantastic book, "Attitude" he describes Father Hagan's role:
According to the staff directory, Rev. Rob Hagan is Villanova's Senior Associate Athletics Director for Student Welfare and oversees Sports Medicine and Strength and Conditioning. "To us, he is simply "Father Rob." Father Rob is our team chaplain—our go-to spiritual adviser—and as such he plays a key role in our pre- and postgame rituals. He is an integral, indispensable, and undeniable part of any success we have as a team."
Father Rob is critical to Villanova's Success because his teaching of Life Lessons is a cornerstone of their Team Culture. Culture drives Job Performance. Coach Wright puts it this way:
"A Caring Culture is how you live together as a unit. Any leader has an opportunity to set a tone for how her/his group or organization lives by being positive, energetic, and invested in team members."
Father Rob's: Teaching Life Lessons demonstrates an investment in the team members. From Jay Wright's book "Attitude" here is one of Father Rob's presentations at a pre-game meal: his own expanded version of the famous 'Wolf" story that powerfully delivered several key Life Lessons.
"A grandfather is teaching his grandson about human nature, and he says that within every human heart there are two wolves. Those two wolves are fighting it out each day in every decision we make.
One wolf says, 'Make sure you get yours. Take the shortcut, the pain-free route, and get as much pleasure out of life as you can.' The other wolf is in there fighting, saying, 'Do the right thing even if it costs you... time or money.... Make the sacrifice for someone else; it might be more difficult, but life can be more meaningful and fulfilling. Do what might be unpopular knowing it will make a positive difference in the long run.
The grandson thinks for a second and asks, 'Then which wolf wins?' And the grandfather replies, 'The one that we feed.'
"Keep feeding the good wolf," Father Rob said. "The good side of our hearts. So much of our lives and decisions are affected by our value system. What are we feeding our minds and hearts? What do we believe matters most? Our lives are a product of the decisions that we make, the small ones and the big ones. Those two wolves are often fed by the people, places, and things that we engage in and with daily. Who am I hanging around with? Who and what am I listening to? What voices are important in my life? Our answers will be revealing and help us to know which side of our hearts we are feeding."
Not all of us are fortunate enough to have someone like Father Rob on our staff but we should find a way to share Life Lessons with our team members on a consistent basis.
How do you consistently feed the good wolf of your team members?

Yours in Coaching,
Craig Impelman




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Application Exercise




How fine it is at night to say:
'I have not wronged a soul to-day.
I have not by a word or deed,
In any breast sowed anger's seed,
Or caused a fellow being pain;
Nor is there on my crest a stain
That shame has left. In honor's way,
With head erect, I've lived this day.'

When night slips down and day departs
And rest returns to weary hearts,
How fine it is to close the book
Of records for the day, and look
Once more along the traveled mile
And find that all has been worthwhile;
To say: ' In honor I have toiled;
My plume is spotless and unsoiled.'

Yet cold and stern a man may be
Retaining his integrity;
And he may pass from day to day
A spirit dead, in living clay,
Observing strictly morals, laws,
Yet serving but a selfish cause;
So it is not enough to say:
'I have not stooped to shame to-day!'

It is a finer, nobler thought
When day is done and night has brought
The contemplative hours and sweet,
And rest to weary hearts and feet,
If man can stand in truth and say:
'I have been useful here to-day.
Back there is one I chanced to see
With hope newborn because of me.

'This day in honor I have toiled;
My shining crest is still unsoiled;
But on the mile I leave behind
Is one who says that I was kind;
And someone hums a cheerful song
Because I chanced to come along.'
Sweet rest at night that man shall own
Who has not lived his day alone.

Edgar Allen Guest (1881-1959)






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