Performance | Jan 29, 2020

Remembering Kobe, the athlete and the man; do the hard tasks first to execute a plan; against hate and inequality, together we stand.

Good morning all. I’d like to start this digest by taking a moment for Kobe Bryant, his daughter Gianna and the other passengers who tragically lost their lives in the terrible accident earlier this week. My fellow digester James Emmett wrote a fitting tribute about David Stern some weeks back, and I felt it was appropriate to do the same. Many nations don’t grow up with basketball, yet when the news broke this week about Kobe, the whole world was shaken. The impact he made as an athlete was colossal, with many rightfully considering him to be one of the best to take to court. I don’t know personally, but all the stories tell of someone who worked harder than anyone, and that ‘squeezed every ounce of juice’ out of his potential. First on the court, last off. Game-winning point after game-winning point. Yet, in this era where resilience and wellbeing is so prevalent, there seemed to be very few who mastered both so well – a fierce competitor, but a family man in equal measure. It shows the importance and power of mindset, and even more so of happiness. The images of him with Gigi in his arms will be remembered as fondly as those with a basketball in them. Thoughts from me and everyone at Leaders are with his family, our friends at the Lakers and the NBA.

4 questions, answered

1.   Matt, got much on next week?  
Well yes, it’s the first Leaders Sport Performance Summit of 2020, down at The Bank of America Stadium in Charlotte, NC in the USA. We’re full to the brim, but we could squeeze a couple more on the attendee list – get in touch with Rory (members) or Matt (non-members) if you’re keen.

2.    Who’s a king and who’s a duke when it comes to high performance roles? 
You may remember I shared a questionnaire last year from friend of Leaders, Martin Buchheit. He was doing some research on performance roles within organisations, how they’ve changed, and the challenges that remain. The results and findings are in, with overview here and full text here. Interesting reading.

3.    Are you a Prince William or a Prince Harry? 
Maverick or stalwart? Find out which royal leader you are more like, here.

4.    What’s one word that you probably haven’t associated with culture before?
Quiddity. Here’s why it’s important.

The Digest, Digested

It’s a numbers game

5 small habits…
…to help achieve big goals.

5 tips on how to use storytelling…
…to captivate any audience.

6 must-read…
non-fiction books of Winter 2020.

10 articles from 2019…
…on workplace leadership.

There’s a science to it. 
Talent identification and development, that is. It’s more vital than ever to get it right, so McKinsey have some advice – listen (26min on the left hand side of page) or download the text version (right hand side of page), via this link.

And not wanted to allow McKinsey to hug the limelight, HBR have shared their views on developing and retaining top talent too.

Furthermore, Leaders’ good friend Sam Walker pens this interesting piece on hiring talent – and how a small research institute tried a ‘Hunger Games’ approach, and what this proved.

Busy Bees 
You’ll all be aware of Moneyball. But are you all aware of Brentford FC? If you can’t outspend them, then outthink them.

First things first
But what is first on your to-do list? Easy task or hard task? Temptation would say former, but logic and research would say the latter.

KB 8-24
A few leadership lessons from the late, great Kobe Bryant.
•    What fuelled Kobe Bryant’s obsessions (4min)
•    Kobe Bryant’s 10 greatest life lessons (8min)
•    Keep shooting your shot: A lesson in greatness (6min)
•    Winning, in basketball and life (4min)
•    11 of Kobe Bryant’s most inspirational quotes (4min)

Mental Health – let’s talk about it.

Diversity and Equality – let’s do something about it.


Mamba out. Kobe’s last few minutes on the court. And what a few minutes they were.


The Aussies do leadership groups better than anyone. Here’s one way to decide and announce your captain.


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