Leadership Lessons from a Scorer’s Mentality

Carmelo Anthony, professional basketball player with the New York Knicks in the NBA, is known as a scorer. And rightfully so. Anthony averages 25 points per game over his nine years as a professional player. This season he averaged 28.7 points per game and in the playoffs has averaged over 29 points per game. Recently, however, Carmelo has struggled with his shooting percentage – he is missing many shots so while he is still scoring points, he is taking a lot of shots to get those points. At the same time, his teammate J.R. Smith has also been struggling with his shot. Carmelo Anthony was asked about these shooting woes and his answer (as reported by ESPN.com) takes us inside a scorer’s mentality.

“I don’t think he (J.R. Smith) will be in a so-called slump for much longer. He’s in here working. The only way you are going to get out of a so-called slump is put more work in, and he’s been doing that.” Anthony went on to say, “Try to stay mentally strong….I don’t really believe in slumps. If you tell yourself you are in a slump, then you’ll be in a slump.”

Let’s see what leaders can learn from a scorer’s mentality. First, I think it’s interesting that Anthony refuses to call these shooting struggles a slump. A scorer’s mentality is one that always remains positive and refuses to allow any negativity. As leaders, we also must remain positive and not allow negativity to enter our thoughts. The mind is a powerful thing. If you can see it in your mind, you can be it. If you believe it, you can achieve it. But this also applies to negative thoughts as well. If you say you are in a slump, you will be in a slump.

Second, Anthony understands the importance and value of hard work. I wrote about this very idea in a post last week, http://wp.me/p2VHyn-4p.
As leaders, we can bring this scorer’s mentality to the challenges we face. We must remember that “the only way you are going to get out of a so-called slump is put more work in.”

Third, Carmelo Anthony kept shooting even when he was in his so-called slump. This is what a scorer does. Scorers shoot their way out of their struggles. They keep shooting. They don’t stop taking shots because their mentality is that the next shot is going in. They are persistent and tough. They don’t remember the last shot that missed; they focus on the next shot that’s going in.

We have learned from Carmelo Anthony that scorer’s are positive; they work hard and don’t back down from adversity; they are persistent and confident. Sounds like a leader doesn’t it? Positive, hard working, persistent, and confident. A scorer’s mentality and a leader’s mentality are indeed very similar.

Thanks for reading,
Jim

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