What makes great teams great? That’s the question Wall Street Journal deputy editor Sam Walker answers in his new book, The Captain Class: The Hidden Force That Creates the World’s Greatest Teams. His answer surprised everyone, including himself. The secret to winning isn’t talent, coaching, strategy, or money. It is the presence of a singular leader—those who make up Walker’s captain class. But these leaders aren’t the charismatic superstars you might expect. So who are they? On this episode, Sam breaks down the seven characteristics of great leaders and challenges our assumptions of what real leadership looks like.
Named one of the World’s 50 Greatest Leaders by Fortune, Dawn Staley is writing the playbook for success… in basketball and beyond. A self-proclaimed “odds beater,” she discovered her love of the game as a kid growing up in the projects of North Philadelphia. From there, the Hall of Famer has found success at every level as a player and coach. As the women’s basketball coach at the University of South Carolina, Dawn led the program to its first national championship in 2017 and was recently named the coach of the USA Basketball Women’s National Team. On this episode, Dawn shares what it took to build a winning culture at South Carolina, the key ingredients of championship teams, and how to develop young leaders.
Where do music’s biggest stars turn when they need a vocal tune up? Mama Jan. Jan Smith is a Grammy-nominated producer and vocal coach to the stars—working with chart-topping artists like Usher, Justin Beiber, The Band Perry, Rob Thomas, Drake, Sugarland, Ciara, and Collective Soul. In all, over 4,000 vocalists, musicians and producers have turned to Mama Jan and Jan Smith Studios for her tough love training and musical expertise. On this episode, Mama Jan shares her insight on talent development, the value of coaching, and how to deliver tough feedback.