What do you expect this post to be about?
C’mon, give it a guess!
Don’t just keep reading!
I said…stop…whatever, nevermind!
You know what this post is about. It may not feel like it, but it is football season(hello humidity!) Specifically, Ohio State Football Season. The last month was long and trying and stressful and there was just so much…unknown to it.
I am absolutely not going to make this post about all that went on with Urban, Zach, Courtney, and everything else. That would make this post 100 times longer than you all want to read my writing for. If you want my opinion on that matter, ask me directly.
This post is about three things that have happened/will happen that were unknown the past couple of months.
Some of you may not know, but as of about two months ago I recently accepted a position with the James Cancer Hospital here at Ohio State. I was excited, but also rather nervous to transition internally. Ohio State is a large place and the political powers that be can certainly be intimidating. I knew that the only thing I could control is what I could control, and that was doing the best job possible wherever I was at. Working for the James has already been extremely rewarding and I am #blessed to be given the opportunity to improve upon an already great hospital. But, like any new job, there was a jump into the unknown.
Part of the on-boarding process at The James is to meet and get to know a multitude of resources and leaders within the hospital so that once the work starts, there is already a personal connection there. I have gotten plenty of great advice from people, but one of the things that most stuck out to me was something I heard fairly recently. I met with our Chief Nursing Officer and he was going over his expectations for the hospital staff. He said that he might not be an expert in everything at the hospital(who could be??) but that he will never change his standards. He will expect the very best out of everyone, and they should expect that out of him as well.
This struck me for a couple reasons. I realized then that I needed to keep the same standards that I had set for myself in all my previous roles. There were standards that I held myself to at my time at Rogue, Tigerpoly, and on my previous team at Ohio State. Those could not change. There is no room to be average. The patients coming to the hospital expect the best from us, so we should expect the best out of ourselves. The second reason it struck me was because of the next unknown adventure I was about to embark on.
That next adventure is going back to….GASP….school! I am now in my second week of my MBA program, where I will continue to work and earn my MBA from The Fisher College of Business here at Ohio State. Talk about the unknown. How was I supposed to go from working full time for 5 years to now working full time while also juggling MBA classes?? That was going to be too hard right? Not enough time in the day! What about fantasy football? What about Buckeye football? What about playing softball? Stress and anxiety would come and go like waves of sickness because I just didn’t know what to expect.
But hearing the words of wisdom that day “won’t change my standards” made me realize that is what I needed to do. I could not change my standards for the things that mattered, like family time, friendships, work, and now school. I had to hold myself to that high standard and adapt and overcome. I looked to some friends and colleagues who had just completed the program, and they had not sacrificed the things that had meaning to them just because they had school in their schedule. Yes, I’ve had to cut down on the extracurricular activities, but in the words of Jocko Willink, “Good.”
It has given me more focus on maximizing time with friends. It has made me appreciate the value of free time, and not to let it slip by. It has forced me to try out new coffee, and lots of it. Silver linings in everything, right?
There are so many things in life that are unknown. I had a great friend move across the country for a great opportunity; talk about the unknown! I also know his standards, and he will do just fine out there. Each day is unknown if we are being honest, but if you attack every day with enthusiasm and a standard of excellence, you’ll do great.
The third reason our Chief Nursing Officer’s words struck me was how it applied to one of my favorite things in the whole world. Buckeye Football. I will hold to my word and not get into the soap opera drama that encompassed Ohio State, but it is part of the story.
I realized that regardless of what happened with the investigation and the personal issues, Ohio State football will still be here come September 1st. The players(people tend to forget that these are college kids) and coaches(adults) who take the field that day cannot change their standards. Unfortunately, Ohio State is no stranger to controversy. There are other investigations and drama unfolding in multiple other areas of Ohio State, but none maybe as forward facing as the football program.
Regardless of the drama and controversy, the team would still be held to the standard of excellence that we have all come to know them for.
“Culture eats strategy for breakfast”
The culture that has been cultivated inside the Woody Hayes Athletic Center, Coffey Road Fields, and the Horseshoe has only been reaffirmed. Acting head coach Ryan Day has already been praised for how prepared he seems to be as a head coach, and that is because he had already been completely bought in to the culture. Did young JT Barrett and Cardale Jones not teach us anything? Next Man Up.
In the hype video for this week the Defensive Line coach, Larry Johnson is getting after the team with some clean(he doesn’t curse) motivation. As is my tradition the video is embedded below(shameless plug to read my other posts!) but he says the following:
“It’s in the midst of adversity you find out what your character’s all about, so the whole world can see who we are – who the true Buckeyes are!”
It takes tremendous character to stick to your standards in the midst of adversity, to hold the line, and to continue to be elite. Come Saturday at high noon, here in Columbus Ohio, we will all see first hand who the true Buckeyes are!