Monday, June 29, 2009

The Flexible Approach

During their 1995 postseason run, the Houston Rockets won their second NBA championship by defeating the San Antonio Spurs and the Orlando Magic. Two quality teams that featured premier centres in David Robinson and Shaquille O'Neal.

Both of them had been severely outplayed by Houston Rocket big man, Hakeem Olajuwon.

In a Life magazine story, Robinson seemed perplexed. "Solve Hakeem?" said Robinson. "You don't solve Hakeem."

O'Neal felt the same way after going down in a Finals sweep . "He's got about five moves, then four countermoves," said a stunned O'Neal. " That gives him 20 moves."

The most all around and successful players are those who consistently demonstrate flexibility in their actions.

They have several options and possess the ability to score in a variety of ways.

Being flexible is vital to achieving any form of success in today's challenging world.

Situations will constantly arise that impact the way we get things done but how we choose to respond to these changes is key.

Developing an ambidextrous mindset will allow you to view and approach problems in an entirely different manner.

You'll consider problems as opportunities to try new and different solutions.

Here are 4 points to keep in mind about flexibility:

1. Nothing is set in stone - People and circumstances can change at a moments notice;

2. Being flexible doesn't mean you're indecisive or unable to make up your mind;

3. Taking a rigid approach suggests that you are resistance to change;

4. You've got to consciously make the decision to be flexible until it becomes second nature.


Great leaders aspire to have mutually beneficial relationships with those they come in contact with. Demonstrating flexibility in your actions can help increase the number of quality relationships in your life.

"Stay committed to your decisions, but stay flexible in your approach."
Tom Robbins

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Monday, June 22, 2009

The Big Shot

There's nothing more exciting in basketball than winning a game on a last second shot.

While much attention is paid to the "shot" as being the difference maker, it's actually very rare that one solitary play determines the outcome of a game.

Rather, it's the events leading up to the buzzer beater are the culprits we should point our fingers at.

Look at it this way.

A squad is winning by a huge margin and the other team makes a furious surge in the 4th quarter and eventually wins on a game winning shot.

Was it the last shot that won the game or was it the steps leading up to it that mattered most?

Both are correct because they've contributed to help the team win. The reality is that the team wouldn't have been in a position to win if not for all the small things leading up to the "shot".

The pathway to our failures and successes are made up of a series of actions leading up until the final outcome.

A missed free throw in the 1st quarter or making a big defensive play are both examples of small things that can happen over the course of a game.

These contributing factors may seem insignificant at the time but they do make a difference, especially in a tightly contested game.

As leaders, it's important to pay attention to contributions from all sources and what role they play in the final outcome.

Understanding what the contributing factors are make the evaluation process much smoother to move through and thus set the team up for future successes.

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Tuesday, June 9, 2009

The Greatest To Ever Play?

One of the classic debates that'll come up every so often in basketball circles is the question of who is the greatest to ever play?

It's a difficult one to answer because we've had the privilege of watching so many greats play the game.

Micheal Jordan won six championships with the Chicago Bulls and dazzled us with his jaw dropping aerial acrobatics.

Magic Johnson brought excitement to the fans of LA with his flashy no look passing ability and award winning smile.

Bill Russell, Wilt Chamberlain and Shaquille O'Neal are all fine examples of what dominant low post play looks like.

Whether you're developing your skills on the court or as a leader, it's key to recognize what our individual skills are and that they count for something.

Here are three quick points to understanding leadership development.


Effective leadership has to be impactful. In other words, your actions must mean something to those around you. Leadership isn`t what you do for yourself, rather how you make a difference to others.

Not all leaders are built the same. Each of us have our own unique personality styles like players on a basketball court. While there could be similarities between individuals at the end of the day, they`re `still different.

There isn`t a specific mold one must follow.`It can be whatever you want it to be as long as the end result meets the condition of my first point. Is it impactful? Does it meet the basic rules of effective leadership?


Taking the the time to understand what you bring to the table are critical to your developing leadership skills. Perhaps you're a good listener or maybe have a great sense of humour. Whatever it is, know that there is a place for them.

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