Business Lessons from OSU’s Championship

by | Jan 28, 2015 | Marketing Strategy, Sales Strategy

In sales and marketing, as in football, everyone wants to rush to the results.

But there is a lot that you need to do in the background in order to achieve the results you want.
A great example of this is the recent victories by the Ohio State football team. OSU just beat the three top Heisman candidates, in consecutive games, using the third string quarterback. Wow. They aren’t new to winning either. They are a consistent contender on the national stage. Why? Because they have built the machine to enable success. Winning attracts winners, and systems mold individuals into teams.


It is not all that different for organizations trying to grow. Those that win focus on:

  • Hiring the right individuals,
  • Creating systems for them to succeed,
  • Staying true to what they know, and
  • Avoiding making drastic decisions too quickly.

On the flipside of the Ohio State story is another Ohio football team that shall remain nameless. They hire talented, yet troubled, individuals, fire their head coach every year or two, change staff like socks, and usually give up on their quarterback within the first two games of the season. No commitment. No consistency. No winning.

This same type of mentality is a huge reason that many start-ups fail, and those that don’t often perennially under-achieve. They want the results and rush to change strategy going one direction then another without a driving focus and staying true to what they know.

Many who go this route use the excuse that they are growth-hacking. I’m somewhat tentative about using this term because of the connotation of “throw-something at the wall and see what sticks.” This is a very different approach than developing a unified focus supported by innovation, creativity, and closely measured results. Tinkering can lead to learning, but this learning needs to be applied.

The better approach is to take the lead from the football greats: get the right players in place, build a system that allows players to think on their feet, follow the playbook, and “watch your game tapes” to evaluate what’s working and what’s not.

Howard Hendricks – longtime professor at Dallas Theological Seminary – once said “Experience means nothing. It’s only evaluated experience that is valuable.”

That’s how you can effectively “nail it before you scale it.

For example, at NuGrowth we’ve found with certain client engagements that contact rates are higher (as much as 10% higher) when our sales reps are reaching out to scored leads. It nearly goes without saying that SRLs and MQLs also exhibit a higher degree of interest and conversion than unscored leads. Armed with that knowledge we can adjust our processes to place higher priority on scored leads, and ramp up our marketing efforts to ensure that the scored leads keep coming.

If your sales and marketing team is lacking the right players, the right structure, the right amount of discipline – or even the time – to generate and follow up on those scored leads, NuGrowth can help. To find out how, contact the NuGrowth team at 800-966-3051 or fill out a contact form and we will be in touch.

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Author: Adam Rapp

Adam serves as account manager for NuGrowth Solutions providing sales and marketing leadership, consultation, and strategy for NuGrowth Solutions and client engagements. In his time at NuGrowth, he has lead several NuGrowth Solutions client engagements driving rapid and scalable revenue growth and ROI for his clients.

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