The chance keeps the competitor in the game

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It comes to the final play, the ending. While it’s that play that often draws the most criticism from amateur coaches everywhere, it’s usually not the final play that decided the game’s outcome. Whether you win or lose is less about the last minutes than it is the whole game and the entire game plan. Close games that are won or lost by tiny margins clearly had a game plan that worked. Outcomes of a game are more reliant on a series of choices and cumulative performance.

If you lost or won by a little bit, you were in the game and had a chance to win. And, you can’t win them all. You will lose sometimes. It’s what you do after the loss that matters most, how you rally.

Even if your work happens at an office and not on a court or field, you’ll be confronted with the same reality. You will lose sometimes. It’s statistically impossible to win all the time. What do you do when you lose? How do you regroup, rally and refine for the next attempt? Winners get excited about the next opportunity and view it as a new opportunity; a chance to win is far better than the sour taste of not being in the game.

Well, businesses have four quarters, too. Each quarter is 131,400 minutes long and after four quarters, your score is entered in the record books or, more likely, your bank’s books. Every period you have a chance to win or lose and the end result of each quarter won’t be because of what happens in the final minute. Instead, it will be the result of the decisions you made well before the game started. It will be grounded in your practice, your preparation, your performance and your passion. The surest of game plans and preparation can only give you a chance to win it and that chance, the chance to execute perfectly, is what keeps a competitor in the game.

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