Your Dream Team

We love movies like Remember the Titans, Hoosiers, and Miracle, because we see a group of individuals come together to become something special!

Coaches dream of one day leading a selfless team, with a strong work ethic, and a relentless desire to be great.

So stop focusing so much time and energy on your latest long term plan.

Stop with all the Xs and Os strategizing or developing the latest business strategy.

Stop with the lengthy mission statements that you post on your website or the team mottos you put on your t-shirts.

Start doing the things necessary today to build a team, school, or business that lives a mission focused on serving others.

Leaders in sports, academics, and business attend clinics, conferences, and workshops in search of new drills, activities, or strategies to help give them the edge.

But if you look at the great coaches, school administrators, and CEOs you understand it is not about Xs and Os, curriculum, or a business plan. Success for a team, school or business comes down to culture.

A culture that puts people over wins and losses.

A culture that puts people over academic test scores.

A culture that puts people over profits.

Greg Popovich and the San Antonio Spurs

Just look at Greg Popovich and the success he has had with the San Antonio Spurs. They have become one of the model organizations in the sporting world, because their primary focus is culture. Everyone wants to be like them.

Listen to what Theo Epstein, president of the Chicago Cubs, had to say about the Spurs. “They’re a great model because they are conscious of creating a culture where players opt in for the greater good and sacrifice personal interest in order to win, in order to have the right rapport with each other. They value the same things, even after winning, and that can be hard. They’re open. They talk about winning. Popovich is intentional with everything he does, and the players hold each other accountable.”


Their culture is no accident.

As a basketball coach I spent years focused on the Xs and Os, conditioning, and skill development.

But I realized more and more every year a hard truth.

None of that matters if your culture sucks.

Do people enjoy showing up?

Do people trust leadership?

Do people care for each other?

Are people committed to the success of the program or business?

Are people given opportunities for growth?

If you want to tap into the intrinsic motivation of your people, you need to have an environment in which people have freedom, share a common vision, and feel supported on their journey.

Building Culture Must Be An Intentional Everyday Thing

As a basketball coach, if you believe shooting 3s is really important you practice it everyday.

If you believe conditioning is really important you work on it everyday.

You practice what you value the most.

What proportion of our time and resources do we commit to building culture?

Every year I hoped for a positive culture, but most years if the team was negative, mentally weak, or lacked chemistry I would make excuses.

“We had no leaders.”

“Our players were just to lazy this year.”

“I inherited a losing culture.”

We did lack leadership, but did I spend time and energy to develop leaders in my team?

We did not have a great work ethic, but did I work to develop the work ethic of my people?

Culture takes time to develop, but did I prioritize the time and resources needed to transform the culture?

The answer was NO.

My wish was to build a culture of individuals who served the mission of our team over their own selfish desires.

I wanted to help young men grow to become better people not just better basketball players.

But I had to start becoming intentional about it.

Being intentional requires you to…

Model it.

Talk about it.

Read about it.

Discuss it.

Write about it.

Train it.

-J.P. Nebun