All It Takes Is All You’ve Got!

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by Coach Rob Balfanz

What do you think about when you are asked, “Do you have what it takes?” or “Does your company have what it takes?”

What is the meaning behind “what it takes?” How do we define those words and what do they mean exactly?

As an athlete and a competitor, I have always believed I’ve had what it takes. However, in business this may be defined differently than in sports – or is it?

As leaders, coaches, educators and business owners, the day-to-day challenges we all face are daunting and often overwhelming.

So, what changes things and what makes us different? Are you satisfied with putting in a “hard day’s work,” or are you a true competitor?

“The question isn’t who is going to let me; it’s who is going to stop me.” – Ayn Rand



As a coach, I run into many diverse types of athletes. In business, I run into many diverse business owners, employees and students. To date, I have yet to see any one of these individuals as an exact duplicate of another. However, one thing that I do find, across all clusters is that they all have several traits in common.

I often tell anyone I’m coaching or working with, if you want to win in anything in life, you have to give everything you have, every day, week, month and year. Even though we won’t win every aspect of everything we do, we must win what matters the most, and we must give everything we’ve got - every time, not just some of the time.

I use this same approach in business, regardless of whether it’s in sales, operations, production, fulfillment, recruiting, learning and development, or training.

Here are eight critical traits that you and your team must have if you want to give all you’ve got!


  • Know when to say no
  • You won’t always be motivated, that’s ok
  • When you’re not motivated, you must be disciplined
  • Learn to control your emotions
  • Learn to control your actions


  • Self-confidence is an outcome
  • It’s ok to fail, just fail forward
  • You don’t need to be first all the time
  • It’s ok to be a fast follower
  • Focus on your team’s strength, not only on their weaknesses


  • Empathy is a character strength
  • Ask questions, be intentional with your responses
  • Seek first to understand before being understood
  • Lead with compassion
  • Everyone is different, create solutions based on what you have learned


  • Hire character, train and educate on everything else
  • Always do the right thing, even when no one is looking
  • Be authentic in what you believe
  • Remain consistent with how you lead
  • Provide value driven selfless goals


  • Never quit, never give up attitude
  • Passion must include GRIT, Guts – Resiliency – Initiative - Tenacity
  • Must include rituals and routines
  • Daily, weekly, monthly and annual goals
  • Write it all down, or your passion will be just a dream


  • You have chosen your own way, you already have courage, now act on it
  • Go all in with everything you do
  • Risk failure, help others succeed
  • Venture into the unknown, write it down and document your journey
  • Commitment is compounding – and WILL lead to growth


  • Set expectations – say it, do it, prove it
  • Hold yourself accountable for the hard stuff
  • Hold your team accountable for the hard stuff
  • Hold everyone accountable for the fun stuff
  • Don’t settle, and expect more than what’s required to grow your business

Teamwork Mindset

  • It will take a village – there is no such thing as a self-made person
  • Ask and involve your team
  • Find a mentor; you don’t know everything
  • Let your team grow – there is no such thing as an overnight success
  • Make the day-to-day fun

If you are going to be successful at anything, on your own terms, it is going to take everything you have, every single day.

“Champions do not become champions when they win the event, but in the hours, weeks, months, and years they spend preparing for it. The victorious performance itself is merely the demonstration of their championship character.” – T. Alan Armstrong

As the industry becomes more diverse and more competitive in many ways, we must take the time to continually educate and push ourselves. An article written by Gary Ryan Blair notes: “To be successful and live the life of your dreams, all it takes is all you’ve got.” In business, in industry, in education, we still have a lot of change coming – so let’s work together and give it all we’ve got!

It STILL is and WILL Always be About the Details

It’s already May, regular season is upon us and we are in the thick of it. Start thinking about the post season and another extended season. Prepare yourself and your team for sustainable, scalable growth, and be intentional when leaning into the remainder of 2022.

“You’ve only got three choices in life. Give Up, Give In, or Give it All You’ve Got.” – Unknown

Have a question for the Coach? Want to learn more about any of the information above? Looking for transferrable examples of any of the topics discussed in this post? Or would you like to request a topic for one of the upcoming Coach’s Corner posts? E-mail the Coach!

Until then,

Be Resilient – Add Value – Stay Healthy – Deliver the Experience - Trust the Process!

To your success,

“Coach” Rob Balfanz, Senior Director, Workforce Development, VSI