Tuesday, October 25, 2011

Giving a Chance to Succeed - Who is Sitting on Your Bench?

     This CBS News story is five+ years old (March 2006) but you still can't help but smile, marvel and be inspired by Jason McElwain.  Sports has always served as a leadership laboratory for youth, a place where they can risk and learn to work collaboratively for something greater than themselves.

     The lessons from this story are many, but here are my 'Top Five', the ones I think are most important:

     1 - Never judge a team member's ability to contribute without giving them the chance to succeed.
     2 - Inspired performance by one member of the team will unfailingly inspire the rest.
     3 - As a leader/coach you must follow your instinct and challenge the 'norm' with action.
     4 - Leaders/coaches have the power to change lives - every single day.
     5 - Is there someone on your bench you haven't 'pointed to' yet?

What lesson do you 'take away' from this amazing story?
Who is sitting on your bench?


  1. I too came across this video not long ago and found it moving. And I love the parallel between leading and coaching you put forward. They truly are similar roles. It's easy for leaders/coaches to go with what (who) they know, but it takes conscious effort and some risk to "put somebody else in the game". Try it, you might be surprised with the results.

  2. Brent - there is nothing more satisfying than watching someone perform at an unexpected level . . .but giving them a chance is the first step! Thanks for stopping by!