There are moments in life when you meet a special person who exudes such tremendous qualities that make your realize they have the ‘it’ factor. It’s hard to put a finger on exactly what the ‘it’ is but it’s definitely the qualities that make the person a natural born leader and one that others will be sure to follow. These are some of the feelings that came to mind earlier this year when I had the opportunity to meet Stanford quarterback Andrew Luck at the annual Maxwell Awards ceremony.
The qualities that make him an NFL caliber quarterback have been discussed for months. However, little has been discussed of his leadership abilities and winning attitude. In our short time together it was evident Andrew is a kid that has prepared his entire life for this very moment. His dad, Oliver is a former NFL quarterback and has been a tremendous influence and mentor to Andrew. Andrew, his family, and coaches have prepared him along the way inserting seeds of success that are coming to harvest. From fundamentals of the game to being a leader in the locker room it is evident no stone has been unturned in giving him the tools, experience, and advice he needed to form this opportunity.
Too often as a society we focus on athletes’ and entertainers’ talent and fail to realize the purpose, passion, and plan they committed themselves to achieving their success. Often times we think they wake up one day with the abilities to perform at a professional level. Talent alone can get your name on a draft list but it is the personal qualities that gets your named called.
For Andrew, he identified his dream of playing in the NFL years ago. Through the help of those within his circle of influence he developed a plan for getting him to where he wanted to be. Passionately, he has spent most of his young life in pursuit of this dream and along the way has become a person who others see as a natural born leader.
While his athleticism is exceptional, his plan and path to the NFL is one that all of us can use to fulfill our dreams. Whatever your dream, where ever you find yourself today, you too can see your dreams fulfilled. Dreaming, casting a personal vision, fundamentals, passion, planning, mentoring; all topics I discuss in my book and qualities that are evident in Luck’s path to the NFL. And interestingly, it will be these same qualities that can and I believe will sustain him as a leader in the league for years to come.
Congratulations to Andrew and the Indianapolis Colts. Like most NFL fans, I expect big things to come from Andrew, both on and off the field.