This weekend the Philadelphia Eagles will face off against the New England Patriots in Super Bowl 52. The Super Bowl is one of the most highly anticipated events every year, drawing millions of viewers around the globe. Bringing not only a great game, but also an entertaining halftime show and of course, the legendary commercials. This year will certainly be no different.
But behind all of the pomp, there are two organizations that have worked tirelessly over the last year to get to this point. Are there any lessons that can be gleaned from the hard work they put in that can help us as investors? What does it take to get to this point?
1. TEAM. To navigate all of the ups and downs of a rigorous NFL season, each organization has to have a team of talented professionals executing each of their responsibilities all year long. Everyone from the general manager to the coaches, players, and all of the support staff has a job to do. And each teammate has to perform that specialized job at a top level every day.
As investors, we also need a team to help protect our long-term financial success. We need to surround ourselves with a lineup of high-performing professionals—our financial advisor, tax professional, estate planner, longevity specialist, etc.—to help us reach our end game. Just like in football, each team member needs to execute his or her respective duty, as well as communicate and work together in order to succeed.
2. PLANNING. Each phase of a complete NFL season requires careful and concise planning. Off-season work, the draft, training camp, preseason, each regular season game, and then the playoffs all require different strategies to make sure the team reaches its short-term and long-term goals.
We as well need different planning for different periods of our investing season. Our financial needs vary based on stage of life—our goals, and therefore our approaches, will differ based on what we are planning for, and where we are from a financial and aging standpoint. One strategy will not cover all situations, so it’s important to coordinate the team to plan for different needs as they arise, and to find ways to anticipate the next steps that we may encounter.
3. PERSERVERENCE. Over the course of one football season, there are wins and losses. Players are injured and traded. Weather changes from pleasant fall temperatures to blustery winter storms. Despite the unpredictability of any given season, the team pushes on and shows up every Sunday, with a book of plays and a goal in mind.
Much like an NFL season, there can be highs and lows for us as investors, and not just pertaining to market results. Circumstances and needs change, as well as our perceptions. With market volatility, socio-economic events, and personal life changes, it can be easy to get carried away or feel like throwing in the towel. But the key to success is to stick with the plan and rely on the team to get us where we ultimately want to be.
There are always lessons to be learned when observing top-performing organizations. Whether in sports, business, or individual achievement, if we take a step back and look at the hard work that goes into any type of success, we can always find some helpful hints.
One more thing.... GO EAGLES