By JLP | February 17, 2011
John Wooden was one of my favorite leadership examples. I have several books by him and like them all. I was reading Wooden: A Lifetime of Observations and Reflections on and Off the Court* last night and came across a list of Coach Wooden’s favorite maxims in the back of the book. I chose some of my favorites from the list and posted them here. I actually liked all of them but didn’t want to post them all. By the way, if you want a brief book on John Wooden’s philosophies, this is a great book to start with.
• Happiness begins where selfishness ends.
• Earn the right to be proud and confident.
• Discipline yourself and others won’t need to.
• Ability may get you to the top, but it takes character to keep you there.
• If you do not have the time to do it right, when will you find the time to do it over?
• The smallest good deed is better than the best intention.
• The man who is afraid to risk failure seldom has to face success.
• Don’t let yesterday take up too much of today.
• Time spent getting even would be better spent trying to get ahead.
• You discipline those under your supervision to correct, to help, to improve—not to punish.
• Consider the rights of others before your own feelings, and the feelings of others before your own rights.
• If I were ever prosecuted for my religion, I truly hope there would be enough evidence to convict me.
• As long as you try your best, you are never a failure. That is, unless you blame others.
• Do not permit what you cannot do to interfere with what you can do.
• Be more concerned with your character than with your reputation. Character is what you really are; reputation is merely what you are perceived to be.
• Be slow to criticize and quick to commend.
• Be more concerned with what you can do for others that what others can do for you. You’ll be surprised at the results.
• You cannot live a perfect day without doing something for another without thought of something in return.
• Forget favors given; remember those received.
• Treat all people with dignity and respect.