Don’t be Like Tim Tebow

What does a former NFL running back have to tell us about human resources?

How about don’t be like Tim Tebow?

For those who don’t follow North American football, Tebow is a former quarterback who, despite a winning record, was traded and cut from teams before finally giving up after not even five years in the National Football League. And in that tale of Tim Tebow’s checkered career is the lesson former Denver Broncos running back Reggie Rivers had for the DisruptHR Denver audience.

“This is a problem that really talented people have. (It) is that they are really effective at what they do, but they sabotage the effort of everyone around them,” said Rivers. There was much to admire about Tebow, Rivers explained, but his unpredictable performance created a problem: his teammates couldn’t trust that he would follow the playbook making it challenging for them to do their jobs.

“Trust is the essential ingredient of leadership,” Rivers said.  Speaking directly to his audience of HR professionals, he reminded them, “You deal with humans who have problems. You deal with systems they have to absorb. You can either be the stabilizing force, the consistency that gives them trust or you can be like Tim Tebow.”

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