4 Key Takeaways from Inaugural Basketball Leadership Committee

“I’m leaving with a lot of positive energy” said Brandon Crone, Director of Basketball Operations for Butler men’s basketball.

Crone was one of 11 outstanding basketball minds selected for the inaugural Teamworks Basketball Leadership Committee. The group discussed how to best empower the student-athletes of today and rising generations, including maximizing team success using Teamworks.

“Not many companies do this type of thing, where they pull people in and say ‘come learn’” said Katie Capps, Director of Operations for Notre Dame women’s basketball.

“I’m excited to take [these learnings] back to campus to use them with our student-athletes and our coaches.”

Four of the key learnings include:

1) More and more teams are creating their own life skills curriculums. Examples include Michigan State’s “Spartans for Life”, which teaches financial literacy and etiquette, and Ohio State’s “Bucks Go Pro”. Both focus on how to best prepare athletes for a life after basketball.

“It’s about growing the community, growing the student-athlete, putting that student-athlete first. It aligns with what we do every single day.” says Arnika Edwards, Director of Operations for Dayton Women’s Basketball.

2) Make it as fun and competitive as possible. In practices, coaches get creative with new drills to get the most out of players. The same should apply to engaging athletes to improve time management, organization and life skills.

3) Athletes and DOBOs share many of the same everyday pain points, including intra-team communication, travel plans, meals, meeting schedules. Each member of the committee uses Teamworks to streamline these operations challenges.

“If nobody says anything, you did it right,” says Crone, defining what “success” looks like for directors of basketball operations.

4) Getting buy-in from administration can be challenging, but is ultimately a big positive. Some admins don’t know that their teams—both staff and athletes—even have a problem (see #3), let alone that technology can help solve it. In this case, seeing can make the difference. Once they understand the pain points and see the value in having a solution, it’s harder to say no.

A quick conversation with one of the 2,400+ teams or departments currently collaborating with the Teamworks Athlete Engagement Platform usually helps as well.

“This is more than just a calendar and organizational company, this is a lot deeper than that,” said David Thomas, Director of Men’s Basketball Operations at Michigan State.

“You really feel like Teamworks wants to partner with you, not just to sell you something,” said David Egelhoff, DOBO at Ohio State.

“It’s about helping student-athletes be the best they can be.”

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