I hate to be a sap, I really do, but I’ve been feeling encouraged about success in the football world these days. Maybe it’s a new college season and a new football season. Maybe it’s because it’s been unseasonably cooler here in West Houston over the last week or so. Or maybe it’s a couple of experiences I’ve had in the last 48 hours that put a little more wind in my sails.

  • One of them was a phone call I got Thursday from a client who’s a financial planner. He got started with ITL about two years ago, and at the time, he was a successful businessman in the Carolinas who knew nothing more than that he wanted to work with NFL players and saw a need. In other words, he was as green as grass. That first year he was with me, there were numerous conversations about the mechanics of connecting with players, what to say, what their expectation level might be, and questions of every stripe. Over time we got to be pretty friendly, but I came to hear from him less over the last year or so. Now I know it’s because he doesn’t have those questions anymore. In his two years in the business, he’s picked up four clients (a very good rate of success), and he told me that he was going to lunch with one of his clients next week along with a couple of the client’s NFL teammates. In other words, he’s now getting referrals from NFL players. That’s exciting, and it’s gratifying to know I played some small role in his success.
  • The other was Wednesday, when I spoke at the Thurgood Marshall School of Law’s Sports and Entertainment Law Society in Houston. There’s just something energizing about seeing the face of the ‘next wave’ of the business. We had a little less than 30 there. In the crowd, I saw not only eagerness and attentive faces, but also business attire; when I was in college, the closest I got was wearing a shirt that didn’t have any stains. In other words, it was great to be in the company of young people who take themselves and their professional goals seriously. They had good questions, they spoke with purpose, and they were on time. Not a bad combination for people who want to take the next step professionally in a competitive world. When I left them, I told them I’d see them at the top, and I mean it.

You really can succeed in football. Whether you’re well-established (as is my first example) or just getting started (as are the students in my second), you can do this. Have a great weekend.