The Soul of A Team – Tony Dungy
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The Soul Of A Team by Tony Dungy is a book about teamwork. If you are a football fan, you probably are familiar with Coach Dungy. He was a player in the 70s on the great Pittsburgh Steelers teams coached by Chuck Noll that won 4 Super Bowls in 4 appearances. He later played for the San Francisco 49ers also. He began his coaching career at Pittsburgh, followed by stints in Kansas City, Minnesota, Tampa Bay, and finally Indianapolis. His Indianapolis Colts won the Super Bowl in 2007.
Currently Tony Dungy is an author and a broadcast analyst for NBC Sunday Night Football. This book of course centers around football and what it takes to win in a competitive environment. But the rules that govern how to win in football are true for businesses, churches, and even in your personal life. Some super concepts are presented in this book.
WHAT I LEARNED FROM THE SOUL OF A TEAM
It takes organized teamwork to be great. Coach Dungy has seen a lot of great things in his career. Selfless acts of courage, compassion, and moments of kindness. Working in harmony with so many people with faith and integrity allowed Tony and those he worked with to change their worlds in the process.
The number 1 thing to be successful in life is to have great teamwork. People who think they can do it all on their own find out that they truly need others. Coach Dungy’s faith in the Lord is exemplified throughout the book. As I read this book, it showed clear similarities to Winners Never Cheat by Jon M. Huntsman. You can read my review of that book at:
Coach Dungy points out that talent alone is not enough. Talent can only take you so far, and without teamwork, you will not be successful for an extended period of time. It takes faith, attitude, and hard work to rise to the top. Teamwork is what will keep you going in the right direction to accomplish greater goals.
Tony Dungy shows in the book that people with great talent may excel for a time, but it takes teamwork to reach the top and remain there.
Examples of this were given in the book including John Wooten, the great UCLA Basketball coach, Coach Chuck Noll, Pittsburgh Steelers coach, and Bill Belichick, New England Patriots coach who has taken 7 teams to the Super Bowl.
The main story in the book is about the imaginary NFL team of the Orlando Raptors and the trials and problems they faced. I will not deal with much of the detail about that but will leave that story for your reading enjoyment.
In summary, the team was in its third year of existence and had never made the playoffs. The owner was ready to throw out the whole coaching staff, management, and team members and totally start over.
Coaches, players, and management were truly at odds with one another and were not on the same page with teamwork goals. The owner was even considering moving the team from Orlando to Los Angeles which put him at odds with the community.
The head coach, offensive coordinator, defensive coordinator, and special teams coach all had their own goals unique to their units. Even the General Manager was conflicted and not on board with a team concept. In the book, Coach Dungy is hired to come in and assess things as a consultant. It is very entertaining and eye-opening.
He gets the coaches, players, owner, and management on the same page by explaining that no team can be successful unless it has SOUL.
SOUL is an acronym that means the following:
S stands for Selflessness – putting your own individual goals aside for the sake of the team.
O stands for ownership. You take ownership of your actions. Everyone’s role is significant.
U stands for unity. To have any chance of winning, everyone must work with a united philosophy with everyone working toward the same goals.
L stands for having a Larger purpose. Doing more than just leaving a Legacy, but doing something larger than just winning games. Building a team for the future and the fans. That way everyone wins.
The whole book revolves around the SOUL of the team. So many issues came up, but each time, Coach Dungy turned them back to one of the 4 parts making up the SOUL of the team.
The book closes by asking a lot of questions helping you to seek your own personal “soul”. So these teachings can go for finding the Soul of a team, but it can be about your business or even your personal life.
Would I recommend this book? ABSOLUTELY. It is an encouragement to anyone seeking to accomplish success in their business or their lives. If you read this book and you will be blessed. Surprisingly, Tony Dungy has several books that he has written. I believe all of them can be found for free on Hoopla Digital.
Read the following article about how to read books inexpensively.
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