The first chapter titled 'Inside-Out' infers true change takes place from self-reflection of our own character as opposed to surface adjustments to our personalities to assuage judgment from others. Character Ethics is a principled approach to self-improvement and interpersonal effectiveness; while Personality Ethics are seen as manipulative actions to achieve short-term objectives. To immediately pull basketball into the conversation, an expected issue for any coach throughout a season is playing time.
During the ‘Hack-A-Shaq’ days Coach Phil Jackson would look to make situational substitutions to limit the number of times Shaq could be fouled late in games. But, after witnessing Shaq already hitting ten in a row it would be hard to take him out. Is that the right decision? Or do you play the odds?
Basketball is becoming more sabermetric with the increasing prioritization of analytics. And throughout all that data many coaches rely upon the law of averages for scouting purposes. There is a subconscious dependency on the existence of balance in the world and from a philosophical standpoint, this is similar to the practice of yin-and-yang.
Does Philosophy and Strategy Align with the Super Stars? With the contribution of the Zen Master - Phil Jackson - working with star athletes to debating Wilt v Russell. Superstars influence our coaching philosophies, which impact our team success.
Can a basketball court be a dojo, "a place of enlightenment" in which disciplined athletes train their hearts and minds through the pursuit of physical excellence? This weeks #BookClub takes six key principles that lead to success from four famous coaches. And Dickie V. and Billy Packer debate what is beautiful about basketball.
Arguments between purists and modernists are primarily about different visions of what basketball should be, not about which techniques work better. Fans of each generation have a subjective view of the best brand of basketball despite evidence of overlap between each era. During my day we played team defense. During my day we moved without the basketball. During my day, then just fill in the blank from what you have heard because everyone has a barbershop type story to tell.
Basketball and Philosophy may not provide guidance on the "foul or no foul" situation when up three with less than five seconds in the game. But, it can challenge our approach when thinking about our daily interactions with our best players. Or things to consider when playing a team for the third time in a season.
The book closes with sustainability. Reflecting from the harvest of the product that has been built and maintaining balance moving forward. The work doesn't end as soon as the season is over. The good news is what has been built can be a blueprint for future opportunities.
At the end of the day, the seed which we plant is cultivated daily by how we teach, the decisions we reinforce, and the practices that are designed. When we talk about Water The Bamboo we are talking about the effect of compound interest, or lack thereof during our season. From this section of the book what we find out is the connection between the three and how it can impact our cumulative growth.
This week's Book Club covers building relationships and the contributing characteristics ("Tools") necessary for the growth of any program or organization. The Coaching Question pertains using the tools from this section to shape a winning habit.