The Law of Significance

12 Apr

One of my favorite authors, and all-around thinkers is John Maxwell. He is the ultimate list maker. He’s so good at recognizing and packaging the principles of life and natural law in an easy-to-understand way. One of my favorite books of his is The 17 Indisputable Laws of Teamwork.

Understanding teamwork is so important in life and has been such a key component to Coach Dixon’s success and the Zizzer tradition that I thought it would be good to review these laws in upcoming blog posts.

Law #1: The Law of Significance says one is too small a number to achieve greatness.

Here are some great quotes from the chapter:

  • The belief that one person can do something great is a myth.
  • “There no problems we cannot solve together; and very few that we can solve by ourselves.”  – Lyndon Johnson
  • Team work is birthed when we concentrate on “we” instead of “me”.
  • “We should not only use all thebrains we have, but all that we can borrow.” – Woodrow Wilson
  • “People have been known to achieve more as a result of working with others than against them.” -Dr. Allan Fromme

Many people view cross-country as an individual sport, because you don’t pass a ball or even a baton to anybody else, and, according to some, there is no strategy to running; everybody just goes out and runs his own race. However, the law of significance is implanted in the young zizzer’s mind early. At the beginning of one’s tenure with Coach Dixon as a zizzer runner it becomes evident that one must buy in to the idea of striving for the significance of achieving something great, like a state championship, or find somewhere else to spend one’s time.

Lisa Brown is a great example of a runner that embodied the law of significance. If I remember correctly Lisa Brown was a two-time cross-country individual state champion in 1990 and 1991. Lisa was a fierce competitor and one of the hardest workers that Coach Dixon has ever coached. Lisa Brown desired the significance of being a part of a state championship team. Even though she was the individual state champion in 1991 she cried after finding out that her team had placed 2nd and made a quote now famous to zizzer lore: “I would trade both my individual trophies for a team title.” She also gave credit to her individual titles to her teammates, claiming that she would not have worked as hard had they not pushed her.

Lisa Brown was a true zizzer hero that embodied the idea of the law of significance by stressing the longer lasting significance of team accomplishments over individual accolades.

Here’s a challenge the next time you face a problem, obstacle, or opportunity. Recruit someone to help you and share in the struggle/joy of the challenge. What you may be able to make good, others teamed up with you could make great.

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Posted by on April 12, 2010 in Coaching, Zizzer History


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