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4th and Long

A football team in a 4th and long position is poised to make something out of nothing. To attempt a play in a 4th and long position is a long shot…a slim chance. Sometimes a team will go for it when there’s no other choice – time is running out and this is their last chance to score.

Sometimes coaches will go for it on a 4th and long early in the game because they either see a big opportunity right now or they think they’ll have sufficient time to recover if it doesn’t go well. No matter what, it’s usually a very risky proposition to go for it on a fourth down.

How often do you as a freelancer or business person have the chance at a 4th and long? You know; the chances that don’t come along everyday: the big client you thought was a long shot to get, an opportunity to drastically expand your social media efforts, the network event where you’re poised to meet the right person who can help give you your big break, or maybe the chance to acquire funding that will secure needed equipment or pay off a business debt.  

What are your options for play calling for your personal 4th and long? Let’s take a lesson from a football team:

  1. Use tried and true methods – Play it safe.
  2. Give the ball to someone else on your team – Delegate
  3. Take a gutsy chance and push forward toward that 1st down – Make something from nothing

O.K., now that you’ve made your choice, what happens next? In football, does a team always make 4th and long? NO way. Does the team give up? Never! So what if we take that gutsy chance and it doesn’t work out according to our expectations? Oh well…you’ll have the ball again and it will be 4th and long and you’ll try it once more.

But what happens when you do make a daring play call and you get that client or that big break? You have to be ready for that too – ready to accept the fact that you’ve made something from nothing – ready for humble self-confidence (yes, the two can coincide side-by-side) – ready to plan your next strategy for winning your game.

What 4th and long are you facing today and what will your next play call be?

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One Response to 4th and Long

  1. Todd E. Jones August 10, 2010 at 9:42 pm #

    I like that Michelle! I have been skirting the edges of going for it on 4th and long, and now, I wonder if I should I think that I hope someone will notice me and propel me to a higher level giving me more business, clients, etc. I haven't taken advantages of some of the opportunities that might be in front of me if I would just “go for it.”

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