The New England Patriots have been the model of consistent success in the NFL since the turn of the century. In an environment where salary caps, injuries, and distractions caused by social media threaten to take teams from their primary focus, the Patriots organization has found a way to always prioritize winning. Their efforts have led to five Super Bowl championships in 17 years.
The seven quotes below are from people within the organization over the past 17 years: the owner, head coach, and players like Tom Brady and Tedy Bruschi.
Each quote conveys a unique understanding of what it takes to be a winner in life and business. Each of these world-class performers speaks to a model of the world that you can use to inspire your own success.
Mental toughness is doing the right thing for the team when it’s not the best thing for you.
— Bill Belichick
How often do you delay feeling good in favor of doing what is right for your business?
Coach Belichick makes it clear that the sum is greater than its parts. Sometimes other people and other things must take precedence over what you want most in the moment. In business like in football, being world-class means making sacrifices. Not always getting your first choice is the price one must pay to get to the top.
If you choose to do things that you are passionate about, you will not only do them better, but most importantly, you’ll be a significantly happier person.
— Robert Kraft
Robert Kraft is the chairman & CEO of a holding group that owns four professional sports teams and many other companies. He has a net worth 6.2 billion dollars. It stands to reason that he’d be chock full of secrets for conducting successful business.
And yet, the most interesting part about this quote is that he’s talking about something attainable by all: choosing to involve yourself in things that you are passionate about. It can’t always feel like work when consistent effort is the goal. You must love what you do to be world-class.
The week preceding the game is just as important, if not more important, to prepare yourself mentally to make sure you know the ins and outs of the opposition. It’s all about getting ready for Jacksonville. It’s a one-game season.
–– Tedy Bruschi
Tedy Bruschi was the defensive captain for three Super Bowl championships with the Patriots from 2001-2004.
An example of how leadership trickles down, this quote shows how Tedy Bruschi mentally approaches each week.
You have to believe in your process. You have to believe in the things that you are doing to help the team win. I think you have to take the good with the bad.
— Tom Brady
Trying to be the best does not work. Instead, focus on giving your best each day, and let your ever-evolving process for achieving your goals dictate whether or not you are successful.
It is unlikely that you will consistently put in the work or go the extra mile for a cause you don’t believe in.
Do your job.
— Bill Belichick
There is no sentence that (arguably) the greatest coach of all time is more famous for than these three words: Do your job.
As he explains, “Do your job” simply means focusing and executing on the 1-3 things the team is asking you to do well. It is well known that Coach Belichick values versatile players that can play multiple positions and understand the game at a high level. This mantra explains why; week in and week out as they prepare for new opponents, their “job” may change. The same goes with your business.
Remember that what you got you there last time might not always render the same result this time. Become a student of your work and adapt to what’s being thrown at you.
I think the great part about what I do is that there’s a scoreboard. At the end of every week, you know how you did. You know how well you prepared. You know whether you executed your game plan. There’s a tangible score.
— Tom Brady
Any worthy pursuit will give feedback on how you’re doing. Tom Brady looks forward to receiving feedback, which means he also embraces failing hard and quickly. Feedback and failure go hand in hand.
Take this lesson from arguably the greatest quarterback of all time: feedback is valuable. It gives you a reason to adjust, to tinker, and to keep doing the things that are helping you succeed. When you don’t shy away from feedback, you have data at your disposal that shows you how well you’ve done. There is no guesswork for you to do.
There will be a time to reflect back and count them up, but… I’m still chasing it now. It’s a new season; I’m still chasing it.
–– Bill Belichick
This quote truly says it all about the New England Patriots and how they perceive success.
Success is fleeting. If you spend too much time dwelling on what you’ve done, you’ll miss out on opportunities to do and accomplish more. Where your focus lies is your greatest asset towards achieving your goals, and as such, you need to focus on what matters most.
It may be hard to let your successes go; but there will be time. The legacy of your business will stay intact as long as you stay in the trenches, grounded and motivated by the large amount of hard work that must be done.
It’s difficult to write a new narrative when you focus too much on reading your own biography.
Make the choice to delay gratification and focus on what matters most with your business.