#InspiredCoaching: Building on small wins to get the big one

The AFCA Coaches Trophy presented by Amway sits on the turf during the first half of the game between the Washington Huskies against the Colorado Buffaloes. The iconic Waterford Crystal Football will be presented to the No. 1 team in the Amway Coaches Poll and national champion at the end of the season. It has been awarded to the Coaches National Champion since 1986 and made available to all Coaches Poll winners since 1950.
The AFCA Coaches Trophy presented by Amway, on the turf during the first half of the game between the Washington Huskies against the Colorado Buffaloes. The iconic Waterford Crystal Football will be presented to the No. 1 team in the Amway Coaches Poll and national champion at the end of the season. It has been awarded to the Coaches National Champion since 1986 and made available to all Coaches Poll winners since 1950. Mandatory Credit: Ron Chenoy-USA TODAY Sports

Everyone wants to win. That’s true whether you’re playing a backyard football game, professional sports or building your own business.

“Wins are addictive,” said Dr. Jen Welter, the first female coach in the National Football League. “Wins are where we create momentum.”

But those big wins – like the college football team that will be honored with the American Football Coaches Association Coaches’ Trophy presented by Amway in January – rarely just happen.

Incremental success

They are usually the culmination of working hard to achieve smaller wins along the way. And those small wins are key to success, whether in sports or life, Welter said.

“If your only goal is five years out, then how do you measure if you’re winning?” she said. “We need some steps and some successes along the way.”

Welter shared her wisdom earlier this year at a summit called “Tackling Grass Ceilings: Building a Winning Game Plan.”  The event was part of Amway’s commitment to #inspiredcoaching through the Amway Coaches’ Poll partnership.

Welter was a panelist at the event along with USA Today sports columnist Christine Brennan and Amway Independent Business Owner Lauren Wilz.

‘Every minute was a goal’

Brennan said it can be easier to not think about how high the mountain is when you’re just starting to climb it and instead focus on what’s in front of you.

“I think it’s probably very healthy to be a bit naïve about what your task is,” she said, to avoid putting extra pressure on yourself.

“I just charged into it with all my heart and soul,” she said. “Every minute was a goal.”

Small wins boost confidence

Wilz said it’s important to break big goals into bite-sized pieces to focus on the smaller wins, not only to celebrate the progress but to believe in your own abilities.

“I believed that everyone else could build a business, but I didn’t believe in my own capabilities,” she said. “Every little step that was a small victory started to build up my confidence.

“Whether that was just selling one product or having a great conversation, piece by piece my confidence grew and I had a team of coaches that cheered me on the entire way.”

David Tenney breaks down big goals into small wins as part of job as high performance director for the NBA’s Orlando Magic. He shared his insights with Amway Connections thanks to another Amway partnership designed to promote #inspiredcoaching.

Orlando Magic High Performance Director David Tenney stands in front of workout equipment with his arms folded and smiles at the camera.

Winning is not a straight line

Tenney and his team of nutritionists, dieticians, doctors, psychologists, conditioners and trainers are charged with ensuring each player is in peak competing condition.

“We give them a sense of where they’re at, and then concisely give them a roadmap of how we’re going to get them where they need to be,” Tenney said. “You have to lay out what is achievable.

“It’s important to realize it’s never a linear process either. They’re going to have good days and bad days. But they’re going to come out the other side where they need to be.”

Want to read more #inspiredcoaching wisdom from those who are tops in their field? Visit AmwayConnections.com. And to learn more about Amway’s sponsorship of the Amway Coaches’ Poll and Amway Coaches’ Trophy, visit at Amway.com.

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