Talent Building Lessons – Miami Heat Coup

Acquiring Chris Bosh and LeBron James and retaining Dwyane Wade has created a lot of press for Miami and the Miami Heat. However, there are some critical business principles that all business owners can learn from this experience.

  1. “A” Players Attract “A” Players – It starts with leadership. Pat Riley is an “A” player, and players want to be on his team. Once you have a core of “A” players, recruiting gets much easier. The resumes start floating in.
  2. Use Your “A” Players to Find and Attract Other ”A” Players – If you need or want to get someone excited about joining your team, get your “A” players involved in the recruiting process. If you get “B” or “C” players involved, “A” players will not be excited to join your team. “Birds of a feather flock together.”
  3. Top Dollar is Not Required to Get the Players You Need – Miami has arguably 3 of the top 20 players in the league, all of whom could have commanded maximum compensation. None of them is getting the maximum, yet they are happy with what they got.  Most players joining the Heat right now can get more money elsewhere. The key is that they are getting enough to satisfy their needs.
  4. Vision is Critical to Recruiting Talent – LeBron James mentioned to the press, “Not three, not four, not five, not six, not seven. I’m not just here blowing smoke. That’s not what I am about. We believe we can win multiple championships if we take care of business.” People want to be on a team where they are contributing to something they believe is exciting. They want to win. Does your environment feel like the team that believes they can win every day?  When you bring people on board, what is the story you are building together? Is it exciting?
  5. Look for Talent Individually and as a Whole Organization – When sports teams look for players, they think of the talents they need for each position and how talents complement each other to win. Do you know which talents are required for each of your positions and how they do or don’t complement each other? Sports teams look at least two deep, so when someone needs a rest, gets injured, or gets in foul trouble, someone else can fill their role. Are you at least two deep?
  6. Strategy Mapping – Coaches carefully map out their positions. In each game, there are specific positions required to make a team and have a full roster. They carefully limit the number of players for each role and determine the strengths needed for each player to support their strategy. Depending on which player(s) they are building the team around and whether the coach’s priority is offense or defense, they carefully select players.
  7. Chemistry – Just because someone has talent does not mean there is a place for them on a team. It must be determined whether they share the organization’s core values and are able to play with the other teammates.
  8. Top Talent Combined with the Right Vision Attracts Customers – When you have the best players moving toward a Vision that is important to your target customer base, your customers will come to you. After the Miami Heat secured Wade, Bosh, and James, season tickets sold out in 6 hours. No salespeople required.

I feel confident that if every company put as much emphasis on talent as sports teams, their overall payroll would most likely go down; each employee could earn more; they would need fewer employees; and growth would go up.

Howard Shore is a business growth expert that works with companies that want to maximize their growth potential by improving strategy, enhancing their knowledge, and improving motivation. To contact Howard Shore please call 305.722.7213 or email him at shoreh@activategroupinc.com.