Super Bowl-winning coach brings message of leadership to Southern Flavor Cocktail reception
ORLANDO, FL — Bruce Arians knows a thing or two about leadership. During his 28-year career as a coach in the National Football League, he worked with the likes of Tom Brady, Peyton Manning, Ben Roethlisberger, Andrew Luck and Carson Palmer. He was named AP NFL Coach of the Year twice, and he led the Tampa Bay Buccaneers to victory over the Kansas City Chiefs in Super Bowl LV in 2020.
So when Coach Arians, who was the featured speaker at the Southern Flavor Cocktail reception March 2, here, during the Southeast Produce Council Southern Exposure convention, was asked what it takes to be an effective leader, he had a large body of work to draw from when formulating his response.
“Whether it’s on the football field or at your business, there are three words that come to mind: Trust, loyalty and respect,” he said. “You need to trust everyone to do their job, including the person you see in the mirror. You need to be loyal to the cause and the goal you are trying to achieve, and you need to respect the process. When we were making our run to the championship season, our mantra was ‘One Team. One Cause’ and we kept a picture of a Super Bowl ring on the wall that we would look at all year.”
He further stated that as a coach, he relied on the leaders on his team to address any problems or situations that arose internally in the player ranks. “I never asked our coaches to deal with those things, I relied on our leaders. After all, they are closer to the situation, and it is their team. Really good leaders trust their people.”
During a Q&A session, moderated by Tampa Bay radio personality TJ Rives, Coach Arians was asked what he looks for when assessing the next generation of talent.
“The two most important muscles are the brain and the heart,” he said. “You can see talent on the field, but it’s what is inside that really makes a difference. That is why I always looked for players that were captains of their high school or college teams, because the dedication and love of the game will beat on-field talent all the time. I wanted someone who was the first one in and the last one out, instead of the last one in and first one out.”
This was the third year for the Southern Flavor Cocktail reception, which celebrates Georgia Grown agriculture. This year’s sponsors were Pure Flavor, Genuine Georgia, L&M, Shuman Farms, Crawford Packaging, Leger & Son, Nickey Gregory, North Bay Produce, Jear Logistics, Herndon Country Farms, Baker Farms, Pratt Agriculture, Mountain View and NNZ.
“The power of the Georgia Grown message continues to be amplified throughout the Southeast,” said Chris Veillon of Pure Flavor. “The Southern Flavor Cocktail is a great way to bring Georgia-based companies and their retail and foodservice partners together for an evening of exciting entertainment. Coach Arians was a fantastic guest of honor, and it was truly a special night for all those who attended.”
Top photo: Tampa Bay radio personality TJ Rives with Bruce Arians, who led the Tampa Bay Buccaneers to victory in Super Bowl LV.