August 23

Things I learned coaching the Scooby Doos

You may have seen earlier today how we are soon launching our Beta Program for Collective Coaching – a brand new small group coaching service we’re soon kicking off.

Coincidentally, yesterday was my first day on the job as a Coach. But not as a Product Coach. Rather, yesterday was Day #1 of the season as I coach the Scooby Doos U7 soccer team.

I was more nervous for yesterday’s first practice than I was stepping up on stage to emcee any of our INDUSTRY conferences. But practice went well, and I learned a few things yesterday that, believe it or not, actually apply to our work as product people as well.

  1. Patience is key. A 6-year-old just isn’t going to pick up that new drill you taught them and master it immediately. But the same should be said for Product Leaders. We hire very capable people to be on our teams. But we need to make sure we’re giving those people the time and space they need to do their jobs well. And sometimes, it just takes a little bit of time for that to happen.
  2. If it’s not fun, why are we doing this? I tried to teach some of the new rules that the kids will need to understand this season. But 6-year-olds are playing soccer to have fun. We may not work in our jobs to have fun, but if you find yourself toiling away at a job you dislike for years on end, you may need to ask yourself if you’re at the right company.
  3. Believe. Like the great Ted Lasso says, you’ve gotta believe. I believe the kids will learn and we’ll have a fun season – and I hope you believe the products you’re building can truly make a difference.

Onto the rest of the season now. Please send some good vibes my way for a successful season with the Scooby Doos!

Mike Belsito

About the author

Mike Belsito is a startup product and business developer who loves creating something from nothing. Mike is the Co-Founder of Product Collective which organizes INDUSTRY, one of the largest product management summits anywhere in the world. For his leadership at Product Collective, Mike was named one of the Top 40 influencers in the field of Product Management. Mike also serves as a Faculty member of Case Western Reserve University in the department of Design and Innovation, and is Co-Host of one of the top startup podcasts online, Rocketship.FM. Prior to Product Collective, Mike spent the past 12 years in startup companies as an early employee, Co-Founder, and Executive. Mike's businesses and products have been featured in national media outlets such as the New York Times, The Atlantic, CNN, NPR, and elsewhere. Mike is also the Author of Startup Seed Funding for the Rest of us, one of the top startup books on Amazon.


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