Reece: Learn from your mistakes, then move on

After a great 7-1 start to their season the Chicago Bears suffered two losses in a row, the last one being a severe beat-down by the San Francisco 49ers on a nationally televised Monday night game. Adding to my woes that day as a diehard Bears fan, my best buddy Jim is a huge 49ers fan.

After that loss, to a player each could have blamed others saying such things like: Offensive line, you were horrendous (again) and couldn’t stop a grandmother from sacking our highly overpaid second-string quarterback. Hey defense, did you forget what a tackle was and for Pete's sake, Devin, would you please, please run forward next time on a punt return.

But they didn’t. Not to each other privately and certainly not publicly. They knew they let the team down. When a good team loses, each individual team member takes a good hard look in the mirror and says to himself, “I could have done better."

Steve Tobak wrote in his article “3 Words That'll Change Your Life": “The virtues of failure is a popular topic these days. While it's true that the only way to get anywhere in business is by failing – a lot – that only works if you learn from your mistakes and then move on. Some people wear failure and regret like an albatross around their neck, completely unaware of how masochistic that sort of behavior is. You only gain wisdom if you learn lessons from failure, forgive yourself – I mean really forgive yourself – and then get on with your business. And treat others' failure the same way.”

A good team capitalizes on the strengths and skills of each player. Add in great coaching, a solid game plan and the ability to make adjustments as you go based on what the other team is doing and winning is pretty much assured. At a minimum, you’ll stay in the game.

So, even after a painful loss and still sore the next morning (both physically and emotionally), you put on the pads, hustle out to practice with your fellow teammates and prepare for a better game, a win next week.

And whether because of pride, practice, planning for the next opponent, making adjustments as to who the starting players will be (not easy, but essential) or most likely all of the above, you do come out a winner. In the case of the Bears it was a 28-10 win over division rival Minnesota. (Yeah!)

The desire to win never fades with great teams.

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Tonight join us at Duke's Alehouse & Kitchen, 110 N. Main St., downtown Crystal Lake, for a special mixer benefiting local needy kids through the Crystal Lake Jaycees Share A Christmas program. On Dec. 4, Centegra Health Bridge Fitness, 200 Congress Parkway, Crystal Lake, will be hosting its always enjoyable annual after-hours mixer. Mixers are from 5 to 7 p.m. and all chamber members and their guests are encouraged to attend for great networking opportunities.

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How would you like to showcase your business in front of 5,000 potential customers? Well, the 2013 Crystal Lake Home & Business EXPO on March 23 and 24 is one of the best, most cost-effective ways to do just that. Registration is going on now and booths are now 60 percent sold out, so don’t wait any longer and register today!

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Beginning Jan. 10, the Crystal Lake chamber’s “Leaders in Action” program, now in its 37th consecutive year, will again provide world-class training by eight presenters, each of whom is a dynamic expert in his respective field. Worth more than $5,000, the chamber is proud to be able to present Leaders for only $195 for chamber members (scholarships available from the Chamber Foundation) and only $245 for nonmembers. Your investment includes breakfast each week and all materials. Class size is limited to 50 people, so sign up today at www.clchamber.com.

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Welcome to our newest teammates! AT&T, Jaclyn Kator; AT&T Small Business, Eric Napadow; Buying Gives, Inc., Mike Militello; Cherne Care Clinic, Dr. Jake Shores; CyberLife Tutors, April Williams; Little Caesars, Kyle Welch; New York Life, Wendy Beyer; Porte Brown LLC-Certified Public Accountants, Paula Clavey; Windows Plus, Inc., Jason Gralik; Y-R Integrity, Inc. Bill Wadford.

• Gary Reece is president of the Crystal Lake Chamber of Commerce. He can be reached at garyreece@clchamber.com.

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