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I went to Marquette University and while recently watching one of their basketball games I heard a quote from their coach, Buzz Williams. He said, “We don’t have a lot of McDonald’s All-Americans* coming in but we have a lot of NBA players coming out.”

Williams is known for his excitement, tenacity and ferocious practices. He takes good players and makes them better. At a small, private school like Marquette it’s hard to compete on recruiting with basketball powerhouse schools like Duke, Kansas, North Carolina, etc. so he has to do it this way.

Not everybody is a natural superstar no matter what the industry. So businesses have to also do this and good leaders (owners) will work with people to make them better, in many areas. It would be nice if we all came out of school ready to be A+ performers but it takes the school of hard knocks to give us the experience we need.

Great leaders are not overly controlling and:

  • Delegate to create experience and a career advancement path
  • Give employees the ability to stumble and fall as they (the leader) puts a mat under them to ease the impact
  • Offer an environment that encourages employees to share ideas without fear of admonishment

* McDonald’s All-Americans are the best of the best high school basketball players nationally.

“Living at risk is jumping off the cliff and building your wings on tthe way down.” Ray Bradbury

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