Monday, February 05, 2018

Building Great Youth Development Teams - Like Building winning Super Bowl team.

Click to enlarge. 
I've posted versions of this article in the past. the Super Bowl just ended and the Winter Olympics are set to begin. Baseball spring training starts in two weeks.  Millions of eyeballs are focused on these sports, spending three to 10 hours or more a week watching the games.

Every team's players have spent many years building their skills and have mastered thick and thin playbooks that show what they need to do to be winning teams. Coaches have been doing chalk-board talks and using "x" and "o" diagrams to outline innovative strategies (like that Eagles' touchdown at the end of the first half of last night's game).

Click on the graphic above to enlarge it. Look at how fans, owners, investors and others help great sports teams become great, and stay great.

How can we get just a fraction of that attention and game design effort focused building and sustaining great youth development teams in high poverty neighborhoods throughout the country?  


Here's a diagram from the Tutor/Mentor Institute, LLC playbook. It shows the goal of helping youth through school and into jobs and careers and the need for programs reaching every age level, in the school day and non-school hours.  It's one of many visualizations you'll find if you browse articles on this blog or pdf essays in the Tutor/Mentor library.

I've written many articles in the past showing roles that athletes and coaches might take beyond what they already do to help kids and communities.   My articles focus on building great teams, which is work owners, media, coaches and fans all help with.  I go beyond the great play or a single game, to building leagues and great teams in many places.

Yesterday J.J. Watt of the Houston Texans was honored by the NFL for raising more than $10 million for flood relief in Texas after the 2017 floods.  This is a great example of the power of celebrities to mobilize resources following a disaster of huge magnitude. I've seen similar efforts focused on helping a single child suffering from a disease or personal difficulty.

What I've not seen are maps, charts, and a game plan...for raising kids, or preventing environmental disasters.  Do a search for J.J. Watt on Google, then look at the images.  Do a similar search for other celebrities and sports stars.  Then do a search for Tutor/Mentor Connection and look at the images. Look at the maps and visualizations on the T/MC search. Click into blog articles and see how they are used.

Think of these as the "x's" and "o's" for making life better for disadvantaged or suffering people. Think of this as the game of life, with celebrities serving as coaches, team builders, sports writers, etc.

Think of how many more people would be thinking and acting differently if you found images like on the T/MC search when you looked up the Olympics, football, baseball and/or basketball players and teams, or TV, Movie and/or Music celebrities.

Think of what it would mean to kids growing up in poverty neighborhoods, or people trying to rebuild after disasters like Katrina, Harvey, or the floods, famine and wars in Asia, Africa and the Middle East if you saw these images repeated over and over for many years.

As you watched the Super Bowl or will be watching the Olympics and  then Major League basedball this week and in coming weeks, spend some time looking at the ideas I've been sharing and then think of ways to enlist sports teams and fans in this strategy.  Take time to share this message on social media and via your own blogs or videos.

Life is a team sport.  Don't just watch. Participate.

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