In the 27 seasons John Wooden coached UCLA basketball, his teams won more than 80 percent of their games, including 10 NCAA titles and four perfect 30-0 seasons. To achieve these results, Wooden did not take the usual path. He didn’t talk about winning; he talked about success. He didn’t criticize; he felt that players responded better to encouragement and enfranchisement. He never yelled—not at players, not at referees. He was relentlessly calm and optimistic.
Wooden got the best out of his players by taking a better path, and it worked. Wooden set a high bar, and the GCs driving the Thought Leaders Experiment are trying to emulate his innovative, collaborative approach. Rather than using their position in the market to criticize or lecture firms, these GCs want to ask questions and encourage law firms so the legal industry can set itself on a better path. (This, by the way, is AdvanceLaw’s approach too—firms are inspired as strong feedback generates work from the 200+ GCs forming the collective.)
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