Tom Osborne went on the Finding Mastery podcast with Dr. Michael Gervais, a psychologist who specializes in high performance.
Osborne starts at the beginning… his father joining the war effort when he found out the Japanese had attacked Pearl Harbor. His father was gone five years, and Osborne is very open about the affect that had on his early life. Fact is, he’s open throughout the podcast as to what made him the coach and the man he is.
If you get past the LEGENDARY FOOTBALL COACH bit about Tom Osborne, you look at a person who was one of the best in history in his vocation. Any time you get the chance to listen to someone who is this dadgummed good at what they do, you should do it, as in – what is the difference between transactional and transformational leadership?
Some quotes from the podcast:
“I told [Bob Devaney] I could make $10,000 as a professor and I’d like to make that much as an assistant football coach and he said ‘ok'”.
“I didn’t particularly want to [become the next Nebraska head coach] because I thought following Bob Devaney would be the kiss of death, so I applied at Texas Tech.”
“We didn’t beat Oklahoma, so it kind of got to where it was a one game season…the noose got tight”
“I liked the strategy [of football], I liked the players, I always felt the players were people who were risk-takers and lived life to the fullest and I liked the challenge of it.”
“For the first 10-15 years I was coach at Nebraska, people always tend to point to what you haven’t done. First it was well you haven’t beaten Oklahoma, then it was well you haven’t won a national championship, but I think as time went on, I wasn’t quite as driven to meet those expectations…I began to move from transactional to transformational leadership.”
“The best way to change behavior was to catch somebody doing something right and to reinforce that.”
“I was never a guy who hollered and screamed…never used profanity, that’s probably more of a personality trait than anything else. Some people, particularly early on in my coaching career, were upset with me because they didn’t feel I was emotional enough…didn’t holler and scream on the sideline. I always felt it was important to keep my head in the game and try to think one step ahead.”
“One of the basic tenets [of the coaching staff] was that we were going to try to put the players at the center. We were going to truly try to serve them and have them be most important in what we were trying to accomplish and they weren’t to be used as pawns on a chessboard to get us what we wanted.”
Seriously it’s worth the time.
Tom Osborne Podcast
Finding Mastery Facebook Page
On a personal level… at the end he speaks about his double heart bypass in his 40s. I never knew Osborne studied mindfulness, nor that he does meditation. I am due a lifestyle change if I want to keep living.

Source: Corn Nation