Rule #42 – You've Got the Template

There is less than five minutes left in the 4th quarter of a high school championship football game. The score is tied 7-7. The All-American tailback catches the punt at the 50-yard line and returns the ball to the 5-yard line. On first-and-goal the quarterback in the huddle calls for a “Pop Right”-a play in which he takes the snap from center, turns to the right and hands the ball off to the team’s All League fullback who dives into the gap between the right guard and right tackle. The play is stopped cold for no gain. On second-down the quarterback calls the same play. This time the fullback runs to the three-yard line.

It’s now third-and-goal. With the clock running, the quarterback calls for a “Pop Left”-the same identical play except to the left side of the line. As they approach the line of scrimmage, the left guard glances at the left tackle and they both nod their heads, as if to signal “it’s now our turn.” As the left guard gets into his 3-point stance he recalls all the blocking fundamentals that have been ingrained into his head by his coaches for many hours over years of practice. Stay low, explode into your man, drive the legs, dig, dig, dig, don’t stop until the whistle blows….

When I think about it, I can still smell the grass as I lay face down in it, my chest across the goal line, that All-League fullback lying over my shoulder holding the ball. I was the left guard. We scored the touchdown. We won the game. We won the championship.

Like all those football blocking fundamentals, this book has included tools, concepts and fundamentals for effective selling and sales management. It’s really on you, the reader, to pull this all together as appropriate and apply it to the big tasks in front of you. In many cases, much is at stake, even more than high school championship games. The clear memory I have was the flashing across my mind, at the exact moment of truth, all that I had learned and practiced to make me effective at that needed time. May it be so for you as well with all that is in this book. May you step up to the occasion and implement all tools and fundamentals necessary for you to be at your best, to sell and execute effectively and successfully in your own high stakes game. I’ll be cheering for you.