Unselfish Teamwork

True leaders can appreciate real teamwork and what it can accomplish, even when that example of true teamwork comes from the opposing team.

So, Thunder lovers (and Spurs haters), I’m going to have to ask you to put your team loyalties aside for a few moments and join me in witnessing true teamwork at best.

I have to warn you that this video is about six minutes long, but it’s worth your time.


(Really, watch the video.)

If there’s a better visual illustration of teamwork and collaboration, I’m not sure I’ve seen it. Tim Duncan, Tony Parker, Manu Ginobili: they’re each a force to be reckoned with in their own right. But what makes the Spurs such a formidable opponent isn’t the star power of their individual players; it’s how those individuals collaborate together.

“I have a shot, but you have a better shot.” Did you catch that? Another commentator said of the team, “Everybody can pass. It’s a requirement.”

This video was a “slam dunk” for me when it comes to illustrating teamwork. Teamwork is unselfishness at its best. So how can we apply it to our leadership and teamwork in the business world? Here are some questions to ask:

  • Is collaboration a requirement – or even a priority – among my team? With my peers?
  • Do I look for “my” shot to take or when I have a decent shot, do I look around to see if a teammate has a better one? Who has a better shot?
  • How do I encourage and reward collaboration?
  • Executive leadership teams, how can you lift up your C-suite teammates instead of competing with them?

Star players come and go, rise and fall. The strength that comes from collaborating together and sacrificing for one another results in more consistent, higher performing team.

(Thanks to a blog follower and OKC Thunder fan Cashlie White for sharing this clip. As she said, you only have to be a fan of “team” to appreciate it.)

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