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Issue 404 - Caring is the Core of Teamwork (Roy Williams Part Six)

Woodens Wisdom
Wooden's Wisdom - Volume 9 Issue 404
Craig Impelman Speaking |  Championship Coaches |  Champion's Leadership Library Login



Hall of Fame Coach Roy Williams learned from his amazing mother, Lallage, how little acts of caring can profoundly demonstrate love. Mrs. Williams worked multiple jobs just to make ends meet. Coach Williams, in his book Hard Work with Tim Crouthers, recounted this story about his Mom:
"After school my buddies and I used to go home past Ed's Service Station, which had a vending machine where you could get a Coke for 10 cents. One day my sister said she saw us at Ed's and asked what we were doing there. I told her and my mom that we liked to stop at Ed's after playing basketball and get Coca-Colas to drink while we'd sit there on the sidewalk and talk. Now my mom knew I loved nothing more than a cold Coca-Cola, but she also knew I didn't have the money to buy one. "What do you do?" she asked me. I told her, "Oh, they have a nice water fountain. I just get some water."
The next morning I'd gotten myself ready to go to school as usual, because my mom always left earlier to go to work. I walked into the kitchen and sitting on the corner of the table was a dime. My mom didn't have very much money, but she was too proud to allow her son not to have what other kids had. After that, when she cashed her paycheck at the grocery store, she'd get rolls of dimes so that she would be sure to have one there for me every morning. She did that every day for years."
Following his Mother's example, Coach Williams showed his High School team he cared for them beyond basketball. He described it this way:
"I joined the players after practice to sweep the floors and wipe down the basketballs, and then I drove many of them home. Wanda made bologna sandwiches to feed the players on the bus back from road trips. We invited them over for cookouts and fed them milk and doughnuts after off-season shootarounds. I wrote personal notes of encouragement to individual players."
This story illustrates how his caring has continued as the coach at The University of North Carolina:
"One day I was in my office in the Smith Center talking to one of my players and my assistant, Jennifer Holbrook, came in and said, "Former President Bush is on the phone for you." I didn't know if it was one of my knucklehead buddies playing a trick on me or not, but I said, "Tell him I'll have to call him back." When I finished with the player, I walked out to Jennifer's desk and I said, "Was it really President Bush?" She said, "It really was." Coach Smith taught me that your players are always your top priority. If I have a player in my office and the phone rings, I will not answer the phone. I have a Plexiglas paperweight that reads, "Statistics are important, but relationships last a lifetime."
What little things do you do to consistently let your team know you care?

Yours in Coaching,
Craig Impelman




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Application Exercise



I Ain't Dead Yet

Time was I used to worry and I'd sit around an' sigh,
And think with every ache I got that I was goin' to die,
I'd see disaster comin' from a dozen different ways
An' prophesy calamity an' dark and dreary days.
But I've come to this conclusion, that it's foolishness to fret;
I've had my share o' sickness, but I

Wet springs have come to grieve me an' I've grumbled at the showers,
But I can't recall a June-time that forgot to bring the flowers.
I've had my business troubles, and looked failure in the face,
But the crashes I expected seemed to pass right by the place.
So I'm takin' life more calmly, pleased with everything I get,
An' not over-hurt by losses, 'cause I

I've feared a thousand failures an' a thousand deaths I've died,
I've had this world in ruins by the gloom I've prophesied.
But the sun shines out this mornin' an' the skies above are blue,
An' with all my griefs an' trouble, I have somehow lived 'em through.
There may be cares before me, much like those that I have met;
Death will come someday an' take me, but I

Edgar Allen Guest (1881-1959)






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