Why Do Grown Men Play Football?

football-17What motivates grown men to dress in bright colored garb and race onto a football field in a blowing snow storm that generates a minus ten degree wind chill?

And why, when the referee blows a whistle, do players charge toward each other with the intent of causing bones to rattle?

“For the millions of dollars they get paid,” is a typical answer.  And it is true that a few, very few, football players make enough money in one game to pave their driveways in twenty-four-carat gold.

When the late All-American Bubba Smith ran onto the field at Michigan State University, the crowd would yell repeatedly, “Kill Bubba kill!”  After one game, when the crowd had been especially loud, a reporter asked, “Bubba, how does it make you feel when you hear a hundred thousand people yelling “Kill Bubba kill”?

“It motivates,” was Bubba’s response.

Sure, boatloads of money may be an incentive; but ninety-nine percent of football players have no hope of earning even bubble gum money.  Could it be that crowd applause and fan appreciation are great motivators?  I think so.

If you have trouble motivating individuals in the workplace, consider erecting bleachers and inviting a few thousand people to clap and cheer when employees give a good effort.

Since this idea is impractical, even by a university professor’s standards, do the next best thing.  Be sure that you cheer the efforts of your staff loudly, often and sincerely.


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