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Rex Ryan, Management Genius, Motivates an Under-performer

One of your team members is a chronic under-achiever. How do you, her boss, respond?

For one idea, let's travel to the practice field of the New York Jets football team, courtesy of the HBO sports documentary Hard Knocks. Head coach Rex Ryan is contemplating the mystery of a former No. 1 draft pick, Vernon Gholston, whose effort is in real question. He's a classic under-performer.

Guessing ahead of Ryan, I thought Gholston might respond to peer pressure. Or maybe just sitting him down for a couple of days could wake him up.

Ryan's solution? Enlist another player to go pick a fight with him to get Gholston's juices flowing. It worked! (We'll see for how long.)

OK, so that tactic probably wouldn't fly at my HR office. But in the football world Ryan has an emotional IQ that would make Ghandi look like a caveman.

Can we think of a similarly out-of-the-box solution to motivate our Donna DoNothing, something short of a brawl? What would Rex suggest?

(Rex Ryan photo by cool13902008, CC 2.0)

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