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Mamba Mondays | Bill Russell

Kobe Bryant was hungry to learn, and he was always looking for people from which he could learn.

Here is what he said about his relationship with NBA legend Bill Russell:

“I knew there was a reason Bill Russell had more rings than fingers. Years ago, then, I picked up an autobiography of his and devoured it. There were a lot of valuable lessons in there. There’s one anecdote Bill shared that stuck with me. He recounts how people always said he wasn’t a good ball handler, just didn’t know how to handle and shoot the ball.
He said sure, he could do all of those things, but why would he lead the Fastbreak when Bob Cousy was playing with him? Why would he shoot jumpers when Sam Jones was on his wing? The message was that if you want to win championships, you have to let people focus on what they do best while you focus on what you do best. For him, that was rebounding, running the floor, and blocking shots.

I thought that teaching was simple, yet profound. It was an insight I had never heard from anyone before. Pretty much as soon as I read that, I reached out to Bill and started a relationship and mentorship that opened up my world.” This message can be used by leaders in all industries. Identify the strengths of the people you work with and lead, and empower them to use their strengths as often as possible.

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