Today, the 2018 NBA Playoffs began. Though the Golden State Warriorsare the defending champions, unfortunately, in the month leading up to the playoffs, they have been playing "uninspired" to say the least. So much so that many people, me included, have been concerned with whether or not they have what it takes to repeat as champs.
But how I feel about their chances of winning the championship drastically changed after watching them beat the San Antonio Spurs in Game 1 today.
They played hard. They played inspired. They played together. They played enthusiastically. They played intensely. They played aggressively. And they won...convincingly.
And I couldn't help but think as I watched them play,
HAVING SOMETHING TO PLAY FOR, CHANGES THE WAY YOU PLAY.
Because the Warriors are now playing playoff games. Because if they lose this series their season will be over. Because a chance to win 3 championships in 4 years doesn't come around often. Because they know that making it to the playoffs the next year is never guaranteed. Because they realize that every team and every player's "window" to be great is very small, It is changing everything about their approach to the game. For the first time in a long time, it looks like they are actually trying to play to their potential.
And this got me thinking about what I think is a very important leadership lesson:
CLARITY OF PURPOSE IMPACTS INTENSITY OF PERFORMANCE.
The more clear a leader can be on what is "at stake" in their leadership, the more likely they are to lead with passion and commitment. The more clear a leader is on what can be "lost" if they don't perform well, the more likely they will perform well. The more clear a leader can be on what they can possibly "win" if they lead with everything they have, the more likely they will lead accordingly.
The Scriptures teach us that, "For the joy set before Him, Christ endured the cross."
Christ was "playing" for our salvation. Christ was "playing" for obedience to His Father. Christ was "playing" for completing the very last detail what He was sent here to do. And that type of crystal clear clarity led Him to commit the most selfless act in the history of mankind.