Mark Cuban, billionaire, has noticed one thing that consistently leads success in both boardrooms as well as on basketball courts: team culture.
This week’s episode of “Re:Thinking With Adam Grant” podcast, the “Shark Tank” investor and Dallas Mavericks owner stated that creating collaborative working environments is more important then acquiring raw talent. He said he’s fired business partners and traded basketball players because of their personalities — especially when the team has multiple self-centered or combative members.
Cuban stated that culture and chemistry are crucial to success. “One knucklehead is enough for a team, but not two.” One knucklehead adapts; two hang out together.”
Cuban stated that he can tell when employees leave for their competitors that an organization is in trouble. Cuban said he likes to prevent this trend by firing leaders who refuse or are not willing to contribute to the team culture, before they can force their employees to leave.
Cuban said, “Sometimes it’s just necessary to turn it all upside up and get rid people that are part the toxic side of things.”
Cuban is keen to hire people who can make the workplace a better place for others when he’s looking for candidates. He hired a CEO with no experience but who excelled in “employee support, employee training and enhancement”.
“[They]Cuban stated, “Maybe we didn’t have the experience on the business side that other people would have.”[But they]We were putting [employees]You are in a position of success [better]I have seen more than anyone else.”
Cuban stated that he doesn’t screen new players for narcissism in basketball but has traded players to increase motivation within the team. His strategy seems to match experts’ opinions. Experts believe that self-centered athletes can have an impact on a team’s success.
In a 2019 studyResearchers from University at Buffalo School of ManagementWe analyzed the levels of narcissism within nearly 35,000 tweets, profile photos, and 400 NBA player profiles. Then we compared our findings with the 2013-2014 NBA regular league season results. The result was worse coordination, performance, and teams with higher levels of narcissism performed worse than teams with lower levels.
Cuban stated that he’s seen the same pattern when coaching. Last year, the Mavericks bounced out of the NBA playoffs in the opening round — the franchise’s 10th straight year either doing so or missing the playoffs entirely. The Mavericks made a successful run to the Western Conference semifinals after Jason Kidd was hired as their head coach in the offseason.
Cuban stated that although we had the same team last year, Jason Kidd came in to set expectations and was a better communicator. “And that helped develop our bond because all the men knew what was expected. They were aware of their roles. They understood their roles and how they fit together. We were able to go further than we expected.
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