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Posts tagged as “stars”

Big Potential: Be a superstar within a constellation of stars

Success in life relies on other people. Shawn Achor talks about this in his new book Big Potential. In this exclusive extract, he explores shining as part of a successful team… I know you want to be a superstar. If you have kids, you want them to be superstars. I have seen countless parents send their kids to expensive private schools, hoping that the competitive atmosphere would turn them into superstar academics whom no school could turn down. Yet these hyper-competitive environments operate according to the misguided notion that in order to be “winners” there must be “losers” as well. This is simply not the case, and it completely misses the point of Big Potential. As famed basketball coach John Wooden once wrote, “The main ingredient of stardom is the rest of the team.” So let’s get really real about winning. One of the most successful coaches in basketball, and perhaps in any sport, is Geno Auriemma, head coach of the UConn women’s basketball team. As of the time of writing, Geno’s team had not lost a game in two years, and his team had won the national championship four of the last five years. How does he do it? He cultivates a culture whereby players are judged by their contributions to the team rather than by their individual successes. Players who become stars by helping the whole team play better will get in the game, while those who try to be “superstars” by upstaging their teammates will sit on the bench. As Geno puts it: “I’d rather lose than watch kids play the way some kids play … They’re always thinking about themselves. Me, me, me, me. I didn’t score, so why should I be happy? I’m not getting enough minutes, why should I be happy? … So when I watch game film, I’m checking what’s going on on the bench. If somebody is asleep over there, if somebody doesn’t care, if somebody’s not engaged in the game, they will never get in the game. Ever.” You could put Geno on any team at any company and he would…

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