Tom Brady is the 5-time Super Bowl winning quarterback of the New England Patriots. His ability to come up big in high pressure moments has earned him the comparison to Joe Montana, one of the best “big game” quarterbacks in the history of the NFL.
But it hasn’t been Tom Brady’s passing skills that have helped set him apart from other great NFL quarterbacks. It’s his dedication, preparation and leadership skills. These are qualities that any small business owner, manager or even entry level employees can put into use in their everyday life.
Here is how, and why, Tom Brady has been “motivation goals” since 2001:
Motivation Goal #1: Believe in yourself
Tom Brady was passed on by every NFL team over and over again and was finally picked with the 199th pick of the 2000 NFL Draft. For those not familiar with the NFL Draft, it’s seven rounds with about 250 picks each year. To go from the 199th overall pick in the draft to being arguably the greatest player the league has ever seen is completely motivational on its own.
Patriots’ Owner Robert Kraft still recalls the moment he met Tom Brady. After the draft, Tom reported to the Patriots’ rookie camp where he ran into Kraft while exiting the building. He stopped, introduced himself and said, “I’m the best decision this organization has ever made.”
“If you don’t believe in yourself why is anyone else going to believe in you?” – Tom Brady
Motivation Goal #2: Seize every opportunity
Sure, it was Abraham Lincoln who said, “I will prepare and someday my chance will come,” but nobody personified this quote more than the skinny, sixth round pick Tom Brady. In 2001, the New England Patriots starting quarterback Drew Bledsoe was injured by a hit from Mo Lewis of the New York Jets. The hit took Bledsoe out of the game and led Patriots’ Head Coach Bill Belichick to put in his backup, Tom Brady.
Brady won his very first start against Peyton Manning and the Indianapolis Colts, which if you read the opening, you know is burnt into this writer’s brain for eternity. Needless to say, Brady led the Patriots to a monumental Super Bowl victory that year over the best offense the NFL had ever seen and as they say, “the rest is history.”
Motivation Goal #3: Don’t manage, lead
What sets Brady apart from every other NFL quarterback isn’t his arm or his legs; it’s his ability to lead his team. Any good manager knows that you are only as good as the workers you surround yourself with.
When it comes time to present to your company’s owner what your accomplishments have been for the week/month/year, it’s your employees who got the work done. It was your job to get the most out of them. Like a great manager, Tom Brady demands the most out of his teammates through actions.
Tom is the prototypical “first guy in, last guy out” leader and challenges his receiving corps an offensive lineman to do the same. He is constantly in the film room and trying to find the mental edge over his opponent and when he does, he makes sure all of his teammates are on the same page and will practice tiny nuances over and over in hope of perfecting them.
During the game, nobody gets more fired up than Brady does and this fire is clearly passed along to all of his teammates who take it and run with it. When you talk about a guy you’d go to battle for, Brady is that guy.
Motivation Goal #4: Set your goals and attack them
Tom Brady’s entire career has been one of a phoenix rising from the ashes. He was passed over in college for Drew Henson, but then led Michigan to an Orange Bowl victory. He then took over a starting job in the NFL and in his first year led his team to a Super Bowl win. Then, after an illustrious career, one bad game vs. the Kansas City Chiefs in 2014 was all it took to call Brady “done” and “not good anymore” by most mainstream media.
What did Tom Brady do? He went out and led his team to the Super Bowl and won it; for the 4th time. But the most notable time Tom Brady overcame odds and scrutiny was this past season. After serving a 4-game suspension handed down by Roger Goodell, for a highly questionable “guilty” verdict when it came to Deflategate, Brady tore through the Patriots schedule all the way to the Super Bowl where he really had to earn his moment.
With the prize being a deeply satisfying meeting with Roger Goodell on the podium and a Lombardi trophy hand off he could only dream about, Brady defied all odds and won the Super Bowl.
“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
Motivation Goal #5: Perform when the pressure is on
Plain and simple, Tom Brady gets better when the pressure is on. Super Bowl 36, game tied with 1:21 left. Brady leads his team 53 yards down the field to get them into field position for an Adam Vinatieri, game-winning field goal.
Super Bowl 38, game tied with 1:08 left. Brady once again leads his team into field goal position for the game-winning field goal by Vinatieri. Fast forward to this year’s Super Bowl. At halftime, the Patriots were down 25 points. Brady had a pretty bad first half, but when the second half started, it was clear that a different, more determined Tom Brady was on the field.
The Patriots scored 31 unanswered points in the second half and overtime, including 19 points in the 4th quarter alone to tie the game up. When the pressure was on, when it mattered most, Brady once again delivered.
You certainly don’t have to like him, but to not appreciate him is absurd. Tom Brady is a constant inspiration to anyone who enjoys success, and if you are reading this right now, you are most likely addicted to success.