Good Coaches and Bad Coaches
Wednesday was a big day for sports fans. The 7th game of the World Series was as good as it gets. And – for Vikings fans – Norv Turner resigning is as good as it gets.
I wanted the Cubs to win because of the 108 year drought … and I really like their manager – Joe Madden. But, I actually liked the Indians more – I liked their style of play more than the Cubs. And the 1-0 game played on Saturday night was as good a baseball game as I’ve ever seen – a genuine work of art.
Sports are chess on a field using physical talents. But, they aren’t just X’s and O’s. The X’s and O’s guys presume all of the players to be equal – thus their schemes seldom work. The games are chess … but based on using strengths or exploiting weaknesses. Both of the World Series managers got it. But, Norv never got it. Norv took over the Viking’s offense after the bye week – when they were 5-0. Norv believed that new quarterback Sam Bradford was finally ready to run Norv’s “genius” offense. Norv’s brand of offense is definitely offensive – in the disgusting sense of the word offensive.
Norv’s X’s and O’s strategy doesn’t work with the Viking’s depleted offensive line. So rather than find ways to work around a weak O-line, Norv stayed with his “strategy” and then used the usual blame on “execution”. Mind boggling.
I’d go so far as to say the biggest problem we have in our society is trying to run everything the way that Norv does. Years ago I worked for a GM that smugly stated that he wanted all of our employees to be able to do each other’s jobs. And I said, “Really? You mean that the bookkeeper will give golf lessons, the superintendent will drive the beverage cart, the cook will run the Pro Shop, the GM will maintain the course, and the Pro will do the books?”
Contrary to modern thought – people are not blank slates. People are different. I think people should strive to be well-rounded (as I wrote a few weeks ago). But people are different from each other. Thank God! And people should find their strengths … and not be set up to fail … they should be set up to thrive.
And a good manager or coach should design their strategy to utilize people’s strengths and to minimize their weaknesses.
It will be very interesting to see how the Vikings do from now on.
GM and Head Golf Professional