Running back Marshawn Lynch is returning to the NFL to play for the Oakland Raiders. If you’re not familiar with Lynch, he led the Seattle Seahawks to two Super Bowl appearances and earned the nickname “Beast Mode.”
He’s a powerful running back who’s not afraid to take a hit. In a 2011 playoff game against the New Orleans Saints, he had a 67-yard touchdown run, breaking nine tackles. The crowd activity and noise for the game-clinching touchdown registered a small tremor on a nearby seismograph, rendering the play to be forever known as the “Beast Quake.”
What can credit unions and community banks learn from one of the most dominant running backs in the NFL? Quite a lot, actually.
NOTHING CAN REPLACE HARD WORK
Are you asking, “Why can’t we close more loans?”
It takes never-ending discipline. Earlier this month, it was reported that Lynch gets up at 6:24 a.m. (his jersey number is 24) and he does “a couple hundred sit-ups, a couple hundred push-ups and then gets back in the bed.”
Hard work is 80% attitude and 20% skill. If you are struggling to close loans and you think you’re working hard, look back at your daily routine. What could be done differently? Remember this: mistakes are great learning opportunities.
CELEBRATE AND ENCOURAGE TEAMWORK
Are your employees willing and able to make teams work? I’m not asking if you value teamwork. Almost everyone will tell you they value team work, but not everyone can make teams work.
If you were to look at the Seahawks roster, there’s an unusual cast of characters. It’s a mix of flamboyant and low-key personalities, and yet, Pete Carroll and his staff have found a way to make it work. How?
You must take culture seriously. The key to teamwork is everyone must do their job. What’s often missing within community financial institutions is the “next man up” mentality. Create a learning environment and support your team.
Keep this in mind: It was common for Lynch to miss training camp. To outsiders, this could be viewed as egotistical. To his coach and team, it was all about keeping him healthy. What’s often forgotten is each time Lynch scored a touchdown he would turn to his offensive line and shake each member’s hand.
ACTIONS SPEAK LOUDER THAN WORDS
Most people know Lynch for his relationship (or lack thereof) with the media. In 2015, during Media Day of the Super Bowl, wearing a hat and sunglasses he repeated the phrase, “I’m just here so I won’t get fined.”
Was Lynch being disrespectful? Let’s face it: public speaking isn’t his forte. I also believe it was a statement to the NFL’s policy that, “Star players, or other players with unusually heavy media demands, must be available to the media….” What about the other 52 men on the roster?
Community banks and credit unions can learn a thing or two here. Since he’s moved back to Oakland, he supports youth sports camps, academic programs and community fundraisers for underprivileged youth in his community. Community should be the heart and soul of community financial institutions. Are we really connected to our community? Be real. Be yourself. Know that customer service is in the details.
When Lynch retired, he tweeted a photo of hanging cleats. Now that he’s returning to play for his hometown of Oakland, he didn’t hold a press conference (no surprise there), but he did take a full-page ad out in the Seattle Times that showed pictures of him celebrating with fans and talking with Seahawks owner Paul Allen. The ad simply read, “Thank you Paul Allen. Thank you 12s. – Beast Mode.”
Actions do speak louder than words.
Frank Allgood has more than 15 years of experience in every facet of public information and marketing communications. As Relationships Development Leader for Your Marketing Co., he is responsible for strategic brand experiences and marketing initiatives for credit unions and community banks across the country. For branding or rebranding projects, call 864.326.8740 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.