In American football, the name Deion Sanders is synonymous with greatness. Known as "Prime Time" during his illustrious NFL career, Sanders was not just a player; he was a phenomenon, a showman, and a game-changer. Fast forward to today, and we are watching the most remarkable corporate takeover and turnaround story in recent history.
As an alumni of the program, I can honestly say that it has been nearly five years since I watched a full CU game. But in the last two weeks, I have carved out 4 hours of my Saturday to watch the most significant program turn in history. Although I am ecstatic to watch the Buffs rise to a premier collegiate program, I am more inspired by what Dieon is teaching me about how to run a great company. Surprisingly, the lessons he's applied to lead a football team mirror those of premier CEOs of Fortune 100 companies.
Here are seven (7) lessons from CEO PRIME TIME that you can apply to your business today:
Lesson 1: Mission, Vision, Values
Like a successful CEO, Sanders understands the importance of a clear mission and vision.
He has breathed new life into the University of Colorado's football program by instilling a vision of excellence and a mission to develop not only great athletes but also outstanding individuals.
Lesson 2: Culture
Values Drive Culture, and Culture Drives the Vision.
CEO "Prime Time" knows a strong culture is the foundation of success. By emphasizing core values like discipline, respect, and accountability, he has cultivated a culture of excellence within the team that aligns seamlessly with his vision.
His first order of business was to clean the house and remove the lousy cultural fits. Like the corporate world, you can be great at your job but not mesh with the culture and get fired. In the years past, this would have been impossible because there was no way to recover all that lost talent, but the transfer portal has become the new job board of college athletics.
Lesson 3: Right Person, Right Seat
In the corporate world, placing the right people in the correct positions is crucial.
You grade if someone is in the right seat by three things:
- Do they get it?
- Do They Want it?
- Are they Capable?
As a CEO, when you don't have the right talent, you have to find them. As the CEO, recruiting the right executive leadership team is your first order of business. After this, the executive leadership team helps recruit the captains & star players (Directors), and A-players (employees). In other words, you delegate to dominate.
Building a team that can execute the vision, live up to the values, and drive the team (business) forward is more important than any other part of the plan.
Lesson 4: Face of Brand & Marketing
As the face of the University of Colorado's football program, CEO "PRIME TIME" recognizes the importance of branding and marketing. His charisma and presence have not only attracted top talent but have also garnered attention and support for the team from other pros, rappers, donors (investors), and a pipeline of talent chomping at the bit to come to work for him.
Lesson 5: Recruiting (Human Capital) is Marketing
Just as in business, recruiting is a top priority for Sanders. He's not just recruiting athletes; he's recruiting future leaders. His knack for identifying and attracting top talent is a testament to his CEO-like approach. He is leveraging his platform as the greatest tool for recruiting.
Lesson 6: TRUST: Integrity, Intent, Capability, & Results
Trust is the currency of leadership, and Sanders has earned it. His integrity, genuine intent to develop his players, capability as a coach, and proven results on the field have solidified his position as a trusted leader.
Lesson 7: NIL Deals and Transfer Portal Change the Game
In recent years, the landscape of college football has changed with the introduction of Name, Image, and Likeness (NIL) deals and the Transfer Portal. Sanders has adapted quickly, treating the college football scene much like a professional team, navigating these changes strategically, and making the most of the opportunities they offer. In business, there are no winners or losers. People will come and go from the game, there are no rules, and the rules are always changing. Coach Prime is laying out an entirely new way to revamp and turn around a struggling program.
Deion Sanders has seamlessly transitioned from a prime-time player to a premier CEO in the world of college football. His leadership style, characterized by a clear vision, strong values, and a focus on human capital, mirrors that of Fortune 100 CEOs. As he continues to elevate the University of Colorado's football program, we can all learn valuable lessons from his approach to leadership, whether on the field or in the boardroom.
African Artist to American Entrepreneur with Daniël-James van den Berg | Pain To Profits Ep. 40
This podcast episode focuses on helping entrepreneurs save time and level up. Samson Jagoras interviews Daniel James Vandenberg; he discusses starting up and integrating into American culture.
Topics covered include running a distributed workforce, the comparison between leopards and entrepreneurs in terms of independence, and the importance of building a platform and brand through podcasts, YouTube channels, newsletters, etc. The episode also explores the role of AI in entrepreneurship, the challenges faced by entrepreneurs, and the mindset required for success.
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