Leadership

What you can learn from LeBron James' secret to success on the court

Dwyane Wade #9 of the Cleveland Cavaliers and LeBron James #23 of the Cleveland Cavaliers high five during the game against the Chicago Bulls on October 24, 2017.
David Liam Kyle | Getty Images
Dwyane Wade #9 of the Cleveland Cavaliers and LeBron James #23 of the Cleveland Cavaliers high five during the game against the Chicago Bulls on October 24, 2017.

On Tuesday, basketball superstar LeBron James helped the Cleveland Cavaliers lead a close victory over the Chicago Bulls by starting on a position he hasn't played in 12 years, according to ESPN. By doing so, James demonstrates just how important it can be to be flexible and a team player in the office.

In a postgame interview, James said that if his coach switches him to different positions on the basketball court, he is able to adapt quickly thanks to what he learned playing the sport during his childhood.

"I think the best thing for me personally is ever since I was a kid, I've always learned every position on the floor," James said. "When I started playing ball, for some odd reason, I could learn every single position on the floor all at one time."

His secret to succeeding on the court? Being on top of not only his role and the skills it requires, but also learning what the other players on his team need to do to be on their best game.

"I know every single play in every single position, so it makes the job a lot easier for me because I know where I should be and what my teammates should do," James said.

By taking on the point guard position, James practiced what all co-workers and colleagues should strive for: collaboration. Instead of just cooperating and being a member of the team, James was able to adapt to the roles of others for the Cavaliers' benefit.

Though his listed position is small forward, James often handles the ball and runs Cleveland's offense as point guards do, reported the Associated Press.

Following injuries to the team's two top point guards, Cavaliers head coach Tyronn Lue switched the lineup.

He played James in the atypical position because "if you don't have a point guard on the floor, it's tough to win games no matter how great LeBron is" as a small forward, Lue said in a news conference.

But in Tuesday's game, James scored 34 points and added 13 assists, both of which are above his career average of 28 points and about seven assists, according to his NBA career stats.

James' versatility as a team player is exactly what retired basketball player Magic Johnson, one of the best players of his time, said also makes James one of the greatest NBA players ever.

"He's special because he makes his teammates better and yet still plays at a high level himself," Johnson told CNBC in June, adding that James is a "special guy, special player, one of the greatest that has ever laced them up."

"The LeBron Jameses of the world come around every 20 years," Johnson said.

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