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5 Things To Look For In An NBA Sports Agent

As you work toward being drafted by an NBA team, it’s imperative that YOU draft the right team – and that includes your agent!

Ricardo Housham once said:

Surround yourself with awesome, confident, positive and optimistic people who will encourage you to stretch, grow and achieve. The more positive energy you have around you, the more positive your world will be.

Surrounding yourself with positive people is essential to success and applies to all aspects of business and life – after all, our thoughts lead to feelings or emotions, which generate action or results. Your decision concerning agent representation should not be taken lightly. The right representation – correct team – and positive thoughts combined with talent and effort delivers the desired outcome. Take a few moments to reflect on the countless workouts you’ve experienced, the intensity, commitment and obsessive dedication. Would you consider any representation which doesn’t mirror your passion and courage to pursue your dreams – on and off the court? I didn’t think so!

the right sports agent enables you to build a legacy of positive and generational impact

The following values can lead to an exceptional and productive partnership between you and your agent:

  • Authenticity – This is the person you will be working with, the person working for you. Leverage your intuition to determine if this potential agent is solely interested in their “cut” or if you believe there is motivation to see you and your family succeed, with the understanding that this enables you to build a legacy of positive and generational impact.
  • Selflessness – This is about you and your career – not the agent. Although ego can be a wonderful thing and used as a tool, driving you toward continuous improvement/perfection (let’s be honest – there’s some ego on MARS!), ego can be detrimental if it gets in the way of asking for help, embracing alternate opinions and ideas while losing focus on the need to serve others.
  • Showtime! – Your agent should have the ability and comfort level with performing on the big stage, on air and in front of the camera. You cannot afford to have an agent who gets overwhelmed by the big moment. Don’t undervalue the need for your agent to embrace the opportunity and the moment as this is also your opening and your time.
  • Professionalism – Your agent is an extension and reflection of you. Consequently, the oral and written communication skills your agent demonstrates with the press, front office personnel, NBPA and everyone in-between can impact the perception of you and certainly influence your brand. Professionalism is obviously baked into availability, responsiveness and having an understanding of your values – the things that are most important to you during your journey.
  • Professional Coaching – Imagine the benefit of having an agent that is a certified professional success coach. A success coach can understand the “stuff” that’s getting in your way (we all have “stuff”) that could be impacting your athletic performance. An effective success coach can also help you expand the mindset that results in peak performance. Success coaching provides guidance to your circle of influence, who can play a tremendous role in your path toward success and greatness!

You have the power and the ability to choose the agent who will do the best job for you and your family – choose wisely my friend!

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Halos, Horns and John Wooden

Have you ever been in a room with other decision makers and heard yourself judge a team member as “good” or “bad”? While raising my hand to admit guilt, there is reflection and the realization that this type of judgement can be detrimental to leadership, organizational culture, team performance and results.

Once you place a halo on the head of a team member or direct report, you may find yourself fighting to defend this status that you’ve created. Similar to the sports analyst predicting the outcome of the game – who then spends the rest of the broadcast explaining to the audience why he or she was right with their awesome thought process.

So when a player under performs or an employee “drops the ball” your position could be:

“This is clearly an anomaly – we all know how solid Smith is!”

But when that the same ball is dropped and you’ve previously installed horns on “Smith” – the reaction is quite different:

“I knew it!” “As we predicted Smith doesn’t have what it takes – just another example of how we made the proper evaluation concerning the lack of talent – what a disgrace!” “I’m so amazing”

Whoa! What a minute! There might be some ownership here. Is it possible that this could be a “ME” thing and an opportunity for me to enhance my leadership skills?

To quote the great John Wooden:

“You can’t let praise or criticism get to you. It’s a weakness to get caught up in either one.”

Ladies and gentlemen remember this:

NO ONE can define your success unless you surrender that control.
• ALWAYS work hard to perfect your craft and constantly improve (especially when no one is watching).
• CONTINUE to build relationships with different admired leaders in multiple departments, various organizations and different industries. These dynamics are more the same then they are different. And understand that being on the receiving end of a halo or set of horns is irrelevant – don’t get trapped believing either –- you are still the one in control!

Until next time – continue to think big and achieve greatness!