Sunday, June 27, 2010

There's Only One Way To Finish

When the chips are stacked against us and the situation looks bleak, giving up is not an option - we have to see our goals through to the end.

Life is filled with countless challenges and how we choose to respond when things get difficult is entirely up to us.

Dan Green, the author of the motivational book "Finish Strong" joins the next episode of HCL Radio show to talk about the steps individuals can go through to achieve success in their personal and professional lives.

I asked Dan to provide an overview of what the Finish Strong mindset was all about.

Click here to listen to what he said.

Check out the the next episode of HCL Radio to hear more from Dan and the Finish Strong concept.

See you on the court!

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Wednesday, June 23, 2010

Hard Court Lesson #6

The Game Changers

The ability to pay attention to the little things is often times the difference between us winning or losing

In a game, this could be an important rebound, a missed free throw or a turnover. Outside the game, it might be us listening to the concerns of others, acknowledging someone's effort or showing appreciation.

These detailed little things are called The Game Changers!

See you on the court!

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Sunday, June 20, 2010

Dads Are Leaders Too

As a society, we tend to judge our leaders based on their actions the same way a jury would evaluate a witness on the stand in court.

Jurors are instructed to watch and listen to the evidence provided as they search for patterns or inconsistencies to help determine the credibility of the witness. The actions of a witness play a significant role into the decision making process and an ounce or shred of doubt is enough to sway a vote in another direction.

This works very similar with leadership as the actions of our leaders are constantly under watch and potential scrutiny. People are watching the things they do but are also paying attention to the things they don't do.

Are they decisive? Do they stand back and let things happen without any form of acknowledgment? Or are they present at all?

The things they don't do are vital elements that heavily factors into the decision making process when evaluating our leaders.

A Day of Celebration

The third Sunday in June is typically known as Father's Day and is the time when the contributions of fathers are acknowledged and celebrated.

However, fathers are missing from many of the households today across North America. As an example, in 2006, 83.2 per cent of single parent families across my hometown of Toronto were headed by women.

This was also my reality growing up.

The person that I am today was shaped by my very awesome and heroic mother who was forced to leave an abusive situation to save her unborn child.

I grew up not having any concept of the what the man whose name I shared looked like, what his beliefs were or what he liked to do during his spare time.

In fact, I looked in his eyes and knew he was my father for the very first time when my daughter, Vanessa was six months old.

He eventually passed from natural causes before she saw her third birthday.

What I Learned

His love, discipline and guidance may have been missing from my life growing up as a child but in many ways his absence or non-actions motivated me to be the best possible father I could be.

I recognized the value of showing up, celebrating victories and being an encourager during defeats. As much as fatherhood is about focusing all of our energy and time on our children, I`ve also developed and become a much better person through the process.

In developing these understandings, I`ve learned how important our actions and non actions are to our children and how critical it is for them to see the examples of "present" fatherhood.

These lessons have stayed with me and have been a constant motivator to be the best possible parent and husband I can be and have weighed heavily into my passion of helping others develop their leadership skills.

As much as my father's lack of presence contributed to my parenting philosophies he also taught some valuable lessons when we finally met.

He left me with a vivid image of what being accountable looked like and demonstrated through his actions that it's never too late to make a difference to others.

Thanks Dad!

See you on the court!

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Wednesday, June 16, 2010

Hard Court Lesson #5

Crunch Time All The Time

In basketball, the last few minutes of play in the fourth quarter is typically referred to as crunch time. These are the moments where the intensity level picks up and players and coaches are the most optimistic about the outcome of the game.

If you're ahead, you think you can hold the lead and if you're losing, there's a chance you can still can come back. This sense of optimism is important and empowers us to the point that we believe that anything is possible.

So let`s make Crunch Time All The Time!

See you on the court!

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Sunday, June 13, 2010

Hustle Makes It Happen

To be the best at anything requires an extreme level of hard work, dedication and comittment regardless if you're trying to be a better player on the court or a leader at work.

The approach is exactly the same and these elements are vital to your success.

Hard work is as relevant to sports as it is to leadership which is why I invited Alan Stein on the next episode of HCL Radio.

Alan is a nationally renowned basketball specific strength and conditioning coach and has worked with some of the top players such as Kevin Durant, Kobe Bryant and Chris Paul.

He's also a performance consultant for Nike Basketball as well as the head conditioning coach for the annual McDonald’s All American game, the Jordan Brand All American Classic, and the Nike Summer Skills Academies.

During our chat, Alan identified a number of key elements necessary to success. One of those components is our mental mindset.

Click here to listen to what Alan had to say about being mentally prepared.

Be sure to tune in to HCL Radio to hear more from Alan and what it takes to be successful in leadership and in basketball.

To learn more about Alan, visit his site at Stronger Team or follow him on Twitter.

See you on the court!

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Saturday, June 12, 2010

Hard Court Lesson #4

Dropping Dimes

Among the vast number of responsibilities that fall on a leader's plate, one of their roles is to help the people around them to become better.

They can achieve this is by making the assist OR "Dropping Dimes"

Passing is an important part of the game and the most effective leaders are those who can consistently get others the ball in the right place to score.

Leadership expert and author, Steve Farber once explained to me that the "greatest leaders are the ones who focus on others".

So therefore, if you can Drop Dimes and shift the attention to others on a regular basis, you're not only increasing your effectiveness as a leader but you're also making those around you better.

This is what Dropping Dimes is all about.

See you on the court!

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Monday, June 7, 2010

A Tribute to the Greatest Coach of All Time

With the recent news of the passing of UCLA's Coach John Wooden, I felt that it was only fitting that the next edition of HCL Radio was dedicated to the man voted by a panel of coaches as the greatest coach of all time!

Why you ask?

  • He won 10 NCAA National Championships in 12 years while at UCLA
  • Seven championships wins in a row
  • Four undefeated seasons
  • In his 40 years of coaching, he only had one losing season, his first year.
He's translated his success off the court in the form several business books focused on leadership and a corporate leadership program at UCLA.

But more important than all the on court accolades was the things he did off the court to grow to young men into responsible and contributing leaders to society.

Andy Hill was one of those individuals and you'll hear a bit from him as he reflects on their turbulent relationship at UCLA and how it grew and blossomed.

As well, Steve Jamison will also provide some insights into the man known as the Wizard of Westwood!

All on the next HCL Radio!

See you on the court!

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Saturday, June 5, 2010

Hard Court Lesson #3

Being the Greatest of all Time (G.O.A.T.)

To be the greatest at anything requires dedication, commitment and an extreme level focus. As New York Times best selling author and my pal Don Yaeger once said, "├Čt`s an approach to living".

We should also remember that greatness isn't defined the exact same for everyone. Greatness is something that's very personal and we each have our own individual idea of what it looks like.

For example, my personal definition of greatness will be very different from that of Kobe Bryant.

Which is a nice segue into Hard Court Lesson #3 - Being The G.O.A.T.

See you on the court!

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