In This Episode

Being in Cleveland, we have a lot of sports talk.  This time of year we have lots of football talk.  Specifically Cleveland Browns football.  When things don’t go well everyone wants changes and has opinions on why things aren’t going well.

Some of the smartest and successful people I know have an uncanny ability to learn from other people’s mistakes.  This is key as it saves them from having to make all those mistakes themselves.  In tonight’s show we share some lessons of what not to do as a leader of your business based on the leadership of the Cleveland Browns head coach Hue Jackson.

Anyone who knows my partner Jack Mencini knows that Jack is not fond of Hue, but we thought it would be good to try to take some positives out of a not so great situation.  Here are a few of the leadership lessons we shared in tonight’s show:

  • Instill Confidence: few things are more important as a leader than to instill confidence in other people. Unfortunately Hue does a lot of things that damage people’s confidence in him, not the least of which is his incessant habit of talking in platitudes and cliches.  If you listen to or read the transcripts from Hue’s interviews you’ll be confused trying to figure out what he’s trying to say.  This is part of a bigger problem in terms of Hue’s overall communication style and ability (at least what he’s demonstrated publicly). A big part of what should be communicated is problems identified and then potential solutions.
  • Better Not To Say It Than Say The Wrong Thing: one subtle part of communication that is lacking for Hue is his ability to not say something. It often appears that he’s just speaking from the hip and not being as conscious as he should be of not saying the wrong thing. He’d do well to just simply skip questions vs. say these wrong things.  He has to realize that he doesn’t need to have all the answers, but instead needs to articulate the next steps.
  • Don’t Rely On Your Title: if I have to hear Hue tell us one more time that he is the “Head Coach of the Cleveland Browns” I think I’m going to puke! This is a very sensitive trump card that you as the leader better use very sparingly.  Things like “hey I’m the boss so do what I say” or something similar.
  • Praise in Public and Correct/Criticize in Private: nobody appreciates being called out in public. When I screw up I usually know that I screwed up.  You don’t need to scream it from the rooftops, not if you want to get the best out of me and my loyalty and best effort.  A little humility goes a long way as a leader as well so don’t always be touting your own abilities to the detriment of the team around you.

There’s a lot of other good stuff in tonight’s show and at the end of the day we can all learn something from Hue’s shortcomings.  Here’s to hoping even Hue learns from his own leadership mistakes and rights this Cleveland Browns ship!


People, Companies and Resources We Mentioned in the Show

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