Summary of The Essential Wooden

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The Essential Wooden book summary
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  • Applicable
  • Well Structured
  • Inspiring


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.

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 and his three brothers to base their lives on integrity, and to shun lying, cheating or stealing. He instructed them not to engage in self-pity when faced with adversity, and explained that complaints and excuses have no value. His most important lesson was, "Be true to yourself." John Wooden stubbornly followed his father's convictions throughout his life, as he succeeded on and off the basketball court.

Leading by Example

Almost without exception, good leaders also are inspirational teachers who motivate their students to maximize their individual potential. Solid leaders build strong teams whose members share similar goals and powerful, lasting bonds. Sometimes, if they are fortunate, such organizations win sports championships or achieve greatness in the business world.

Leadership means instilling proper values and emphasizing character. Honesty is absolutely essential...

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