September 23, 2020

When most people think of Bryson DeChambeau, they think about how he plays golf.

For good reason: On Sunday, he won this year’s U.S. Open.

It was DeChambeau’s first victory at a major championship. He bulldozed the field on the tournament’s last day.

Yet, more interesting than how DeChambeau plays golf, is the way he thinks — and how he communicates.

He’s a leader, not a follower.

A maverick.

He looks like a linebacker.

His irons are the same length.

He prefers chocolate milk over alcohol.

His golf game is rooted in an obscure book published 50 years ago.

He talks unabashedly about science and the pursuit of excellence, stacking cliché on top of cliché.

“Win the battle, relish the glory,” he said, unprompted, after taking the podium on Sunday.

“If you’re counting on luck, good luck,” he said. “That’s why we prepare.”

DeChambeau is palpably different from other golfers — he’s original.

It’s the key to his success.

You can’t win without an edge, and you can’t gain an edge if you act like everyone else.

But while originality is an asset to the beholder, it’s often viewed as a liability by others. It’s a threat to the status quo, an affront to how things have always been.

DeChambeau’s confidence is particularly controversial. It’s perceived as a product of arrogance, though its true source is unadulterated competence.

That’s the price DeChambeau pays for being a maverick. If he listened to others, he wouldn’t be a champion.

There’s a lesson in this for banks.

“Any competitive organization must nurture its maverick thinkers,” writes retired four-star Marine General and former U.S. Secretary of Defense Jim Mattis in Call Sign Chaos: Learning to Lead.

“Without mavericks,” he continues, “we are more likely to find ourselves at the same time dominant and irrelevant, as the enemy steals a march on us.”

John J. Maxfield, editor in chief of Bank Director
/ ideas, insights and perspectives on

Bank boards will be challenged to think outside the box as they evaluate CEO pay in an uncertain environment, according to Bank Director’s 2020 Compensation Survey.

“This environment is an opportunity for [forward-looking banks], because it gives them the ability to make the changes they’ve been wanting to make.” — Flynt Gallagher, Compensation Advisors

Emily McCormick, vice president of research for Bank Director