Peak Your Profits: Basics and fundamentals + Principles and practices = Explosive results

Jeff Blackman

If you’re a leader, attempting to get your team to “do something” they ought to be be doing, because you know it’ll drive far better results, you may encounter challenges, resistance or push-back.
Likely to sound, something like this. “You want me to do what?!” “You’re kidding! That’s too basic!”
It intrigues me, when folks exclaim an idea or strategy is, “too basic.” Because they then declare: “That’s something I already know” or “That’s an idea I’m familiar with” or “That’s a strategy I’ve heard before.”
Well, guess what? Your folks, (or even you), should know it, should be familiar with it or have heard it before. Why? Because the preceding would be considered principles. And principles are timeless. They don’t change. Yet the key, is to convert the principles into practice.

  • A “principle” is what you “know.” The “practice” is what you “do.”
  • A “principle” is the “idea” you’ve “heard.” The “practice” is how you “implement” it.
  • A “principle” is the “strategy” you’re “familiar” with. The “practice” is how you “execute” it.

The practice is how you apply the principle to an opportunity, challenge or decision. Practices evolve and grow from principles.
Principles plus practices, drive profits! After all, you don’t compensate your team for what they know, but for what they do! Pay for performance, not intent.
As a client of mine says, “avoid Peacocking!” Meaning, don’t fall prey to your or your team’s self-important prima-donna pride or puffed-chest posing, as they, (or you), boast, “I already knew that!” or “I’ve heard that before!” or “I’m familiar with that.”
When folks tell me this, I politely ask, “What did you do, with what you already knew, heard or were familiar with?” Often, I hear silence! It isn’t what you know, it’s what you do, with what you know!

In this Jan. 1, 1967, file photo, Green Bay Packers coach Vince Lombardi walks on the sideline during the team's 34-27 win over the Dallas Cowboys in the NFL championship game in Dallas.

There’s a reason, over the decades, countless clients of mine; CEOs, presidents, business-owners, and C-suite leaders have said, “Jeff, while we need to learn new business-growth strategies, we also, must return to the basics.” Or, “Our people have forgotten the fundamentals.” There’s also a reason, professional athletes start their training camps, with fundamentals or basics. 
According to Green Bay Packers legendary lore, their iconic football coach, Vince Lombardi, began every pre-season training camp the same way. He’d say, “Gentlemen, once again, we’ll start with the fundamentals.” He’d then hold up a football and declare, “This … is a football!” To which all-pro offensive lineman Jerry Kramer exclaimed, “Coach, could you please slow down!”
Under Lombardi’s leadership, the Packers won five NFL Championships and Super Bowls I and II. And since 1971, the NFL Super Bowl trophy, is named in Lombardi’s honor. Apparently, Lombardi knew basics and fundamentals work. Big time! Plus, help you win!
But it almost sounds, too basic! Yet here’s why basics and fundamentals always stand the test-of-time. Because, again, they’re principles. Etched in stone. They lay the foundation. And you can’t erect a tower, without a strong foundation. 
Here’s a powerful example. Recently, I spoke to a group of CEOs, presidents, business-owners and C-level executives in Walled Lake, Michigan, near Detroit. The results-session, was held at Shelving + Rack Systems, Inc.
Their president, Mike Burskey, is a heck of a nice guy. (And like me, a big fan of classic rock music). But Mike and I, quickly bonded over something else. Emblazoned on the walls, throughout his offices, were simple signs proclaiming: Back2Basics.
Mike first posted these signs in Q2, 2016. He says their purpose is to, “Remind our team members of the importance of doing the basics right, the first time. Look at what we’re doing, improve upon that where we can, and not chase shiny objects.”
And what has the impact been? Mike stresses, “It has helped maintain focus, on doing what we do. Reduced errors. And helped to reduce crisis. We hear often, ‘What’s the procedure?’ Our team has been receptive and is on-board.”
So how will you get your team on-board? With the basics. And the fundamentals.
For the driving force, is then, how you as a leader, choose to help yourself and your team, convert the basics, fundamentals and principles into practice.
Then, and only then, can you transform the practice, into profit!

More:Peak Your Profits: Take your best shot - Shoot ‘em up! Sign ‘em up!

Jeff Blackman is a Hall of Fame speaker, author, success coach, broadcaster and lawyer. His clients call him a “business-growth specialist.” If you hire speakers, contact Jeff at 847-998-0688 or And visit to learn more about his other business-growth tools and to subscribe to Jeff’s free e-letter, The Results Report. Jeff’s books include “Stop Whining! Start Selling!” (an Amazon Bestseller) and the revised 4th edition of the best-selling “Peak Your Profits.” You can also stay connected with Jeff via Facebook, LinkedIn and Twitter: @BlackmanResults.