Leadership from Five Point Play and Comparison to Real World

Leadership Examples from Five Point Play 

  • Position without title
  • Goal Setting
  • Communication
  • Teamwork

Leadership Examples Observed in the RWL Program– Comparison to Five Point Play
Position without Title and Teamwork

Finding a leader who started out in a leadership position from the moment of birth is challenging. Most leaders in today’s society do not start out with the title of being a “leader” handed to them on a silver platter, but instead began work in a position without a leadership title. The ability to be a leader from a position that does not automatically include leadership with the position can be challenging when it comes time to accomplish tasks or get co-workers to cooperate.

Not every basketball player can score 30 points and hit the game winning shot every night. In Five Point Play, Coach K elaborates on the importance of role players on the team as well as managers, coaches, and even a transfer student. The point is stressed that every role must be played with discipline and that every role is important in order to have a successful season. One person in particular who really helped the team win the national championship in the book was a player by the name of Dahntey Jones, a transfer who was not able to step onto the court during the games. Dahntey was ineligible to play for that year as he had to sit for his transfer from Rutgers to become official, but that did not stop him from playing a crucial role of enhancing the practice environment and increasing the competition. Dahntey could not make an impact by scoring baskets in a game; the role he led from was preparing his team for their games. Five Point Play goes into much depth as to how the transfer had such a positive impact and helped lead the team, even though not many fans knew it.

Two people who stood out at different RWL worksites as employees who led without a title were “Bob” and “Betty”. Bob and Betty were workers who did not have titles but led with great knowledge of their roles and their belief in the “team” of employees they worked with. When an issue or problem arose, from simple to complex, Bob and Betty were the “go to people” from the point of view of their respective employees. Bob and Betty were not necessarily the smartest or nicest of folks, but they accomplished their tasks and they knew their roles inside and out. Bob and Betty had the potential to move to a higher level of employment than where they were, but both were comfortable with their roles and knew the companies benefited from their knowledge. Bob had been with his company for nearly twenty years and Betty even longer. Betty had at one point told me, “I am happy where I am, and I know that I am important to the people around (here). They have offered me a higher managerial position a few times, but I would rather stay where I am and help a younger kid get there.”
Just like Dahntey in Five Point Play, Bob and Betty played the role of leading and helping others succeed without the spotlight instead of being the person receiving the glory. They are leaders within their respective companies and are well respected for the roles they play.

A good lesson from the RWL Program is that the best place for a leader is not always the top position, and it often is not in a prominent place. Leadership is often found in the place where one can serve his or her best while adding value to other people.


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About the Program

The Real World Leaders - Real World Students Program is a leadership program created in partnership with the University of Kentucky that enables students to work at different work sites across America and observe a wide variety of leadership skills, traits and characteristics.

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