How To Lead – Tom Allen Summary

These are some general notes taken from the Tom Allen Luncheon.

Coaching is awesome profession. You have a captive audience. You have an opportunity to impact many young lives.
Impacting Young Men. How to motivate. How to capture their heart. That’s what is at the core. At this level, you forget why you do this in
Impact has to go well beyond the game. The question I’ll eventually get asked by Jesus is
Stood Before Defense A Year Ago
I held up FCA Bible and said I’m going to lead this defense by the principles of this book. Here are some of those principles.
1. Lead by Example.
A mantra for my life is, “Work like it depends on me. Pray like it depends on God.”
As believer, we should be the hardest working guys out there.
Mark Batterson book, “The concept of prayer depending on God” has been a big part of my life.
I’m a big believer in reading. In spring, I have all of my staff spend 30 minutes in reading.
2. Connecting with their Hearts:
It’s about capturing their hearts. I meet with every player one-on-one to talk about life. Family members who they live with.
Ask what are three most important things to you. Invariable, some will mention faith or God. I ask them if they said God, I said, “How is your relationship with Him.” If they don’t bring it up, I don’t go there.
I pray regularly with my wife. We pray for things going on in their lives. I ask how I can pray.
When I find out things in their lives I pray for them. LEO (Love each other) can’t be a phrase on the wall, it has to be a lifestyle.
I care about their value as a man.
Be anxious for nothing. Pray over and over. Philipians 4:6 is a verse I hold onto.
This is a stressful profession. The pressure to win. The moves, the schedule. Philippians 4:6 – Be anxious for nothing.
Pray with fervency and intensity. I want to live by that verse. Peace of God will guard hearts and minds.
Biggest perk of being a believer, is the peace that comes. My peace comes from knowing that there are things much bigger than me. My confidence does not come from my performance on the field.
3. Big into accountability.
Accountability – toughness and love. That’s what I want this program to be built on.
The book “The Traveler’s Gift” by Andy Andrews. 7 traits for success in life.
First trait is, “The buck stops here.”  When I came here, I owned our past. A lot of what was missing was “trust.”
This theme kept coming up there was no trust. The banner on way out to field had the word “trust.” Yet they were not paying attention.
Without trust, there is no relationship. When I first met with the team, I heard a lot of blame going around.
The words “It’s not my fault” should never come out of your mouths again. This is from the Andrews book.
Set standards high and hold players to it.
Challenge to “Capture the hearts and minds of player.” Hold your players to the little things. Accountability.
Being late is unacceptable. Whole team pays the price. Doing the little things right, really counts.
4. Pursuing Toughness
My definition: Ability to make quality decisions, over and over and over again.  That’s what the great ones do. Anybody can do it for a little bit. But the great ones do it over and over again.
I’m a great believer in studying the great ones. Fascinating to see what they focus on and what they do.
Mental and physical toughness is what is demanded to be a great football team.
Big thing, nothing can break us.  I look for opportunities to break us. I try to get into their head.
I tell them “If I can break you, then Michigan, or Ohio State, or cold weather, or hot weather will break you.”
Get our minds stronger and train them. If I see somebody frustrated, I will go after them in the right way.
When you love them, you can be hard on them. Because they know you care.
Proverbs 23:7 – “As a man thinks, so is he.”  I challenge them all the time. Most kids can probably complete the phrase.
Do they live it out.
I chalI believe you are a product of the books you read, the music you listen to and who you hang out with.
Who you fill your mind with and who you hang out with tells who you are. It doesn’t change when you’re and adult.
If I want to be a great man of whatever, I hang out with that guy.
To be a great coach, I find the coaches who coach like I want to be and try to hang out with those men.
Have a dream that is so big that it will fail without God.
5. One Word – What do you believe
The “one word” is a big deal. Everybody in our program came up with one word. To give us focus, purpose and passion about what we are doing.
What makes those words so powerful is that they picked them. We put them on a mural on a wall. We use one word as the focus of our practice.
In the middle of it is the word “break though” – It’s about belief.
What is belief. It is about what you have convictions about in your heart.
What do you take a stand for. What do you live for. What are you ready to die for.
I want the players to understand that I really do believe in them.
3 by 5 cards powerful example. Ask them what they think record will be. Now write down names of teams you think we will get beat by.
I then read names of teams that I thought I would see. I then said, “When we go to play Michigan, if you wrote that team down. I don’t want you on the bus.”
If you don’t believe, stay home. They got the point. If you don’t believe…
I wrote numbers 50-26-10. I asked, “What do they represent.”  50 years since we’ve one the big ten, 26 years since we’ve won a bowl game, and 10 years since we had a winning season. If you don’t believe we can do better, it’s time to go.
Summary and Close
What gives me strength. Three messages from first day I came that I wanted to drive home.
  • LEO = Love Each Other
  • Don’t care who gets the credit
  • It’s not about me.
The team is learning valuable lessons.
Preparation brings confidence.
Confidence creates expectation.
Expectation creates performance.
We are in the second stage. We can’t win the big ten alone. We need each other.
Beautiful thing about what we do is we get to teach them how to be successful in life. It teaches them to be a great employee. A great leader.
I believe strongly that our players are beginning to get this. They are seeing how the choices they make affect everybody on this team – everybody at this university.
We need to get them to focus on guys on each other to see great things happen.
Ephesians 3:20 – “To him would could do more than  ever ask or imagine.”
That is my prayer.
Break through spiritually in hearts of player. Change way they live.
Break through Mentally – mindset. Mind is powerful.
Break through Physically – changes the way they play.
James 5:16 – The effectual fervent prayer of a righteous man availeth much.
Work like depends on you. Pray like it depends on God.