On Sports, Business and Chemistry Experiments

“To have the opportunity to come out here to show my talent, win a national championship with my brothers, it’s unbelievable. I love these guys like they were my real brothers. That’s it.” – Chane Behanan, Louisville forward

Buried inside this marvelous basketball season for the University of Louisville is a lesson for business. Maybe two.

The first one is obvious: Teamwork gets it done. You can’t rely on one or two players if you want to make it to the top.  Everybody matters. Look how the Louisville men’s team pulled together after one of their own suffered a gruesome injury halfway through the tournament.  Look how they overcame big deficits both Saturday night and last night – with huge contributions from second-string players.

The second lesson is to relax and let your people do their thing. You can analyze, strategize and hypothesize forever – and indeed a good strategy is important – but at some point you have to believe enough in your personnel to set them free. The U of L women’s team was not given much of a chance against better-known opponents throughout the tournament. But now look at them, pooling their talents and competing for the national title tonight.

Why? Because they’ve kept loose, enjoyed themselves and worked together as a unit. Sometimes it’s more than X’s and O’s. Sometimes it’s about confidence. It’s about chemistry.

The economy is bouncing back. The companies that get a jump on the competition might be the ones whose people are given the freedom to excel. What is your business doing to get back in the game?

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