Maybe you read the headline and thought this piece is about a college conference. Nope – it’s actually about NASCAR. The weather didn’t cooperate this weekend in Texas and so NASCAR is running their top two series’ races today. You might know I’m a big fan of Sprint Cup racing and was watching yesterday afternoon during the rain delay because they hadn’t yet officially postponed the race. One interview Fox Sports conducted was with Carl Edwards who give what I thought was a pretty good business lesson.
Edwards was asked what he thought it took to be a good driver and he said a good driver has to have three things as character traits:
- Analyze – look at the data in front of him on the car’s gauges as well as feel what’s going on in the car – the stuff that doesn’t show up in the numbers
- Confident – believe in your team, in your crew, and in yourself. Take calculated risks and have the confidence to make them happen
- Communicate – let the crew chief know what’s happening with the car as well as with you.
Those seem like pretty good abilities for any businessperson too. I’d add a few more both for business and NASCAR driving:
- Creativity – see the landscape all around you and find the openings as well as avoid the danger with solutions that aren’t always apparent
- Calm – it can get pretty hot on the track and in the garage – the best drivers don’t lose their cool in either place
- Courage – you can’t win every race despite your best efforts. Engines fail, others catch you up in wrecks not of your doing. It takes courage to sit in a chair going in excess of 200 MPH and it takes courage to get back in that chair when the worst happens.
Are you race fans? What things do you think apply in both business and on the track?