The New England Patriots won a fifth NFL championship with an exhilarating, odds-defying comeback in Super Bowl LI.
Aside from putting more swagger in the strides of New England fans and giving the team’s detractors one more thing to moan about, the Patriots have provided yet another example of why their famed mission statement – “Do your job” – is more than a catchphrase. Even when the Patriots don’t win the Super Bowl, players perform at a high level, regardless of where they are on the depth chart, and demonstrate they understand coach Bill Belichick’s emphasis on preparation and purpose.
Although it might seem fanciful to compare a desk job to an NFL career, the Patriots still offer lessons on how we mere mortals can go about work. So let the two-minute drill begin. Here are three ways you can do your job like a New England Patriot.
Never Give Up
This is an evident lesson after the Patriots scored 31 unanswered points in the second half and overtime of their latest Super Bowl win.
After nearly three quarters of endless pass rushes by the Atlanta Falcons, Super Bowl LI didn’t seem like quarterback Tom Brady’s moment. Facing a fourth down and three yards to go with 6:04 remaining in the third quarter, the Pats trailed 28-3. But instead of punting, the offense went for it. New England notched a first down, with Brady connecting with receiver Danny Amendola for 17 yards. That play led to a touchdown, which led to a field goal, two more touchdowns and an unbelievable two two-point conversions – just to tie the score.
Granted, you won’t dodge linebackers at your desk, but your job is an opportunity to succeed or fail. It might seem easy to punt tough assignments when facing a fourth down, but it’s more rewarding to dig deep and do your job. Even if the finished result isn’t your best, you will have learned a few things from the bangs and bruises of a tough task. Who knows? Through diligence and dedication, you can become an MVP who brushes off failures and delivers.
Brady served a four-game suspension to start this season for his alleged knowledge of footballs that might have been intentionally deflated. What would have killed most teams only made the Patriots stronger, as they put on blinders and went 3-1 in his absence. Then, throughout the lead-in to Super Bowl LI, Brady, Belichick and team owner Robert Kraft were blitzed with criticism for their relationships with President Trump. Suddenly, the team’s drive for five championships became a referendum on Trump’s administration. Fans without a horse in the race wished for the Patriots’ demise as payback to Trump.
Kraft chose to explain his loyalty to Trump. When Kraft’s wife, Myra, died, Trump consoled him for a year, lifting his spirits. Belichick and Brady, though, focused on the game and took even more heat for not discussing Trump. Even if you don’t talk politics at work, some people aren’t going to like you for puzzling reasons. Stay positive, as Brady says he does, and focus on your job. It’s easier said than done, but the work itself can be a balm to exterior pressure and an opportunity to prove people wrong. Whatever your motivation, strap on your helmet and put yourself in a position to win.
Join the Right Team
Only certain types of players want to slip on a Patriots jersey. Sure, Belichick – who also drafts college prospects and signs free agents – misses on some players, but over his 17-year run with the team, he’s largely succeeded in finding people who will subsume their egos and pass on individual fame to play in a system that expects everyone on the roster to meet demanding expectations.
If you’re at a company that doesn’t consistently reach whatever seems like a “Super Bowl” win, don’t be afraid to step outside of that arena to find a championship environment. Make sacrifices in pay and position if it means doing a job where consistency and commitment can put you within reach of your profession’s Lombardi Trophy.