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Issue 605 - "An Opinion Without Facts Is Just A Guess" (Liz Wiseman)

Woodens Wisdom
Wooden's Wisdom - Volume 12 Issue 605
Craig Impelman Speaking |  Championship Coaches |  Champion's Leadership Library Login



Liz Wiseman is a bestselling author, researcher, and elite leadership coach. In her New York Times bestseller, Multipliers: she researched over 150 leaders worldwide. She described a behavior that great business leaders and John Wooden had in common: They insist on knowledgeable opinions not just opinions. They know: "An Opinion Without Facts Is Just A Guess". In her book Wiseman uses Ernest Bachrach as an example.
"Ernest Bachrach from Argentina was the managing partner for Advent International, a global private equity firm. With forty years of experience in international private equity and an MBA from Harvard University, Ernest is clearly an expert. But the source of his genius is the environment he creates to unleash the genius of his organization. One of his analysts described his approach: "Ernest makes a conscious effort to create an environment. He creates forums for people to voice their ideas. But he holds a very high bar for what you must do before you voice an opinion. You need to have the data. He has a problem with opinions without data."
If you were in a staff meeting with John Wooden or Ernest Bachrach, you knew in advance what topics would be discussed. You were expected to be prepared to express a knowledgeable opinion. Coach Wooden’s assistant coaches described him this way:
Gary Cunningham: "We were free to disagree. He did not want yes-men. He wanted people who would express their ideas."
Denny Crum: "He was always open-minded and willing to try something if I could justify it in our meetings."
A knowledgeable opinion is based on personal experience, research, what we learned from others and most importantly, proof (optimally through statistical data). If you want to know if an opinion is knowledgeable, ask one of two great questions:
"How did you reach that conclusion?" or "How do you know that?"
Are your opinions knowledgeable?

Yours in Coaching,
Craig Impelman




Watch Video

Application Exercise



The Dull Road

It's the dull road that leads to the gay road;
The practice that leads to success;
The work road that leads to the play road;
It is trouble that breeds happiness.

It's the hard work and merciless grinding
That purchases glory and fame;
It's repeatedly doing, nor minding
The drudgery drear of the game.

It's the passing up glamor or pleasure
For the sake of the skill we may gain,
And in giving up comfort or leisure
For the joy that we hope to attain.

It's the hard road of trying and learning,
Of toiling, uncheered and alone,
That wins us the prizes worth earning,
And leads us to goals we would own.

Edgar Albert Guest (1881-1959)






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