Like many people I watched the ‘Last Dance’ documentary on Netflix recently. I really enjoyed it. I’ve never really watched basketball. I knew who Michael Jordan was, but didn’t know a lot about him or the Chicago Bulls. As the episodes unfolded, I could start to see why the team had been so successful and it wasn’t just down to one superstar.
Here are three things I took from the documentary about leading and building successful teams
Intrinsic motivation is key – There are two types of motivation, extrinsic which are external factors such as awards and money. Secondly there is intrinsic motivation which is driven by a desire to explore, grow, learn or actualise your potential. As you watch the games, training and scenes go by you see that the players and particularly Jordan, are driven by intrinsic motivation. It really was the difference between winning and losing
Have a diverse team – The Chicago Bulls were a great team not just because they had Michael Jordan but because they had a diverse team that complimented their strengths and weaknesses. Having a diverse team has been seen to increase productivity and creativity because you can draw from a broad range of views, experiences and backgrounds.
Continual self-improvement is vital – Its amazing to watch how much time the individuals in the team spent training, identifying weaknesses and practising. Each player had a role within the team, and each took individual and collective responsibility to be the best in that position. There was almost an obsession to continually improve and identify areas to develop.
I’m not a basketball fan but there was so much to learn about successful teams from the documentary. As we all emerge from this current period the companies that understand their intrinsic motivation, embrace diversity, and provide a platform for continuous self-improvement will thrive.