Steve Kerr Teaches You The Secret Of Leadership — In 12 Seconds

Yes, really, in only 12 seconds.


When I go to twitter, I typically only look at NBA associated twitter accounts, so I didn’t expect to find what I found — a short, but powerful video that unlocks the secret of leadership in 12 seconds.

When I first saw the video, I started cracking up. This is perfect.

The teacher of the lesson on leadership? Not surprising for people that know him — Steve Kerr. Kerr is a man of wisdom and also someone who has gone through tremendous hardship early in his life and had some incredible mentors.

▶ ️Now take 12 seconds and watch the video:

So let’s break this down line by line…

“you know what’s exciting for me?” — Kerr likely already has a good relationship with Bell, but he establishes the fact that he loves what he does — he genuinely cares about being a coach. Great leaders often make you feel the same — wow they are really putting a lot of energy and commitment into continuing to be a great leader.

“you’re already really good” — After establishing that he is excited, he lays a foundation of respect, saying that Bell is already a really good player, but he is hinting that there is some potential for improvement…

“…and you can be so much better” — Kerr is direct, after establishing his level of excitement about the feedback he is going to give he gets to the point — you have room to improve.

“So many little things” — He gets to the point. There are many things to work on, but he does not make a big deal of it — he calls them “little things.” Bell is likely thinking That’s all? Only little things? When do we get started on working on them?

“You’re doing so much great stuff. Man you’re killin’ it, killin’ it” — Again Kerr is so excited about the good things that Bell is doing and reinforces this again. Who isn’t ready to go work hard for Kerr at this point?

“That’s awesome…you’re gonna get better” — Again, Kerr points out that there is still room for improvement, but shows confidence that he will definitely get better. Notice the parallels with earlier where he said, “you can be so much better” and then he closes it out with confidence about where he is headed — you will get better.

Kerr clearly understands the secret of leadership

It often takes great leaders a little while to stumble upon the fact that “managing” people is the wrong frame. People can only be led. Some people never realize this and spend decades trying to control and micromanage — making people miserable in the process.

Kerr likely learned this lesson early on from his father and great coaches like Lute Olson, Phil Jackson and Gregg Popovich.

But luckily, we can break down this 12-second video and learn some of the lessons that Kerr absorbed throughout his career:

I present:

Steve Kerr’s 5 Secrets of Leadership

  1. Be passionate about the development of others
  2. Show excitement about the art of being a leader
  3. Point people in the direction of their potential and believe in them
  4. Help identify opportunities for improvement but downplay their significance relative to their strengths and potential
  5. Keep focusing on the future — pointing people towards their growth and show deep belief in their ability to keep improving

About Paul Millerd

Paul is a writer, creator, and curious human that is passionate about how people can reimagine their relationship with work to do things that matter. He published The Pathless Path in 2022.