Thoughts on Leadership: How Leaders Can Build Momentum on the Road to Success

Momentum is a force you need on your side as the leader of any type of business or organization. It is often the decider between winners and losers. In the book “The 21 Irrefutable Laws of Leadership,” John Maxwell explains that, “Momentum is really a leader’s best friend. Sometimes it’s the only difference between winning and losing.”

Momentum is when things happen easily, where one success follows another and forward growth comes quickly. Momentum allows leaders to move past mistakes and opens possibility for change. It motivates people throughout the organization to achieve more. It makes leaders look good.

Here's an amazing story of recent momentum in a major sports team:

Last Sunday, the Dallas Cowboys, a team with a 1-7 record going in and under new leadership, played the New York Giants, arguably the best team in the NFC. The Cowboys won. Under these challenging circumstances, what was it that pushed this underdog team to victory?

It was the Cowboys' first game under new head coach Jason Garrett, and they played like an entirely different team compared to the rest of the season. They looked like the talented, confident and capable team that fans expected to see going into this season. They believed they could win. And it all started with momentum.

The first thing Cowboys Coach Garrett did after taking over the team was create momentum. He reminded the players to be great every day so that they could be great in the big moment on Sunday. The process, as he refers to it, is about stacking one “great day” on top of the other. He grabbed attention, tightened rules and raised expectations.

"You feel a different vibe around here," defensive end Stephen Bowen said. "We worked really hard last week and we showed what we get when we work hard. I felt it just from the beginning of the week it was going to be a different effort. Everybody was all in behind Coach Garrett, and you see how we played out there."

Garrett explains, “I thought our team responded and the intensity was there in all areas. We were challenged in all areas and I think we stepped up.” Most important was the result - a dominating performance against the NFC East leading Giants, ending the Cowboys five-game losing streak, while making it clear that new management has taken over.

While achieving momentum, it is important to overcome any barriers that come your way. If problems or obstacles occur, do whatever it takes to get past them and move forward. That same problem will become easier as you see more and more success.

The Dallas Cowboys did not look back and did not look forward. They were 100 percent in the now and wanted to build on the good things they were doing and eliminate the bad. The players understood expectations and limitations. Players responded to their new coach with the kind of performance that showed this team still cares and has built the momentum.

Creating momentum is not easy. Do the little things that build momentum in your life today. Give yourself to excellence today – it will give you something to build on when tomorrow comes. It takes hard work and effort, but once you have momentum, it can not only change your business and team but your life too.