Summary of The Essential Wooden

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The Essential Wooden book summary


8 Overall

9 Applicability

7 Innovation

8 Style


Each page in this terrific book offers nuggets of wisdom from one of the greatest college basketball coaches of all time. John Wooden’s UCLA teams won 10 National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) championships in 12 years, including 88 consecutive winning games, setting legendary and enduring records. But the way Wooden's players behaved was even more impressive than the number of games they won. Never arrogant, the Bruins epitomized self-control and teamwork – unselfish, disciplined and intense. An outstanding tactician, Wooden recruited superbly talented athletes. However, he always believed that basketball was merely a vehicle for teaching his players about life and what really matters, hence this book of maxims and advice. Coach Wooden’s principles about leadership and individual potential extend far beyond the basketball court. He does not define success just as victory, but as a full, complete team effort. getAbstract recommends this book to everyone, no matter what game you play or lead.

In this summary, you will learn

  • How to develop leadership based on quality, not achievement
  • How to create a winning team that builds upon its successes
  • Why the most important aspect of leadership is helping people reach their potential.

About the Authors

John Wooden coached UCLA’s basketball team to 10 national championships in 12 years, including an 88-game winning streak. He also wrote Wooden: A Lifetime of Observations and Reflections and Wooden on Leadership. Steve Jamison, a public speaker and an authority on John Wooden's career, has collaborated with Wooden for the past decade.



Valuable Hand-Me-Downs
John Wooden credits his father, Joshua, with instilling the core beliefs that shaped his philosophy. Joshua was a self-schooled, determined farmer who appreciated literature and poetry, completed crossword puzzles in ink and had a remarkable memory. He taught John...

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    Marcus Pingol 2 years ago
    Great insights and principles on leadership - nicely summarized for quick read and learn session!

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