SPONSORED: Drew Brees, turned entrepreneur QB, says adversity is key to building inner strength | Arkansas Business News

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Retired NFL quarterback Drew Brees says he was always a positive person, so much so that his New Orleans Saints teammates used to call him “boring optimism “. Perhaps that’s why the 2010 Super Bowl champion turned broadcaster and businessman sees adversity as a way for leaders to develop inner strength and mental toughness rather than something to be feared.

“You’re going to have all types of adversity, you’re going to have all types of times and circumstances where all of a sudden you feel like you’re going off course (and) going in a direction that you and your team didn’t expect you,” Brees said. “And yet, you have to be the calm hand that steers the ship.

Brees shared his thoughts on teamwork in football and in business on the January 2022 episode of the 21st Century Business Forum, a webcast that features monthly one-on-one interviews with some of the world’s business minds and leaders. most eminent opinion in the country.

The Business Forum is presented by Arkansas Business and sponsored by CHI St. Vincent.

Register now: The Business Forum continues on February 9 with sales trainer and entrepreneur extraordinaire Jack Daly. Sign up to watch the free webcast here.

Brees said toughness of mental variety is the second of the three skills needed to be a great quarterback and also a great CEO. The first skill “very simply is the ability to motivate and inspire” others, he said.

“By motivating and inspiring, you bring out the best in those around you,” Brees said.

Styles can vary, Brees said, but the most important thing a leader can do “is show people how much you care about them.” In his case, Brees said, it’s about letting people know every day “the gratitude I have for them in the role they play as part of the team.”

The third skill of a great team leader, he said, is to show character and responsibility.

When the world is good, the leader should put the credit on the team and its members, the future Hall of Famer has said.

“When things aren’t going well and you get all the criticism, man, you have to shoulder it, you have to shoulder that burden,” Brees said.

When those around you see you taking on this responsibility, “it takes the pressure off them and makes them want to work harder to achieve the ultimate goal, with you and for you,” he said.

Although Brees, 42, only retired from football last year, he was already involved in the business world as co-owner of the 15 Surge Adventure Parks locations and through franchise investments. Dunkin’, Jimmy John’s and Walk. -On’s Sports Bistreaux chains.

Brees said he uses three criteria to determine where to invest his time, energy and money.

The first is authenticity.

“Do I like this product, do I like this segment of the market, do I like this aspect of the business?” Brees said.

The second is brotherhood and relationships.

“This is where you start looking at who are the people in leadership positions in the company and (ask) ‘Do you share the morals, do you share the values, do you share the same vision of direction the company is looking to take and how will it grow?'”

The third is curiosity, which Brees defines as knowing more about a particular opportunity and “if I can add value to help the business grow.”

Jennifer C. Burleigh