top of page

Core Values & Your Biggest Moments

So what are core values and why are they important? I define core values as the behavioral focal points for your program or organization. They're what you lean on in the biggest moments. They help you create an identity and a sense of something bigger than the individual. If your team is solely based on talent and superficial characteristics, facing adversity will break you. But, if you show up every day with a purpose while serving the core values of your program, you are built to weather the storm.

Regardless of your field - sports, business, sales, tech, education - core values help you achieve and maintain success for the long term because they foster a clear picture of who you are collectively and how you do things- in other words, identity and culture. It sounds simple, but it's not all that common. A sense of program or something bigger than the individual is something that we don't often see, even at the professional level (of anything - not just sports). It's the Patriot Way, It's the Celtic's Ubuntu and the list goes on. It's people of an organization serving the values and through those, achieving success.

At Lesley, our first Core Value was Relationships. Our relationships with each other were deep - they still are. We knew each other and trusted each other and we knew that would transfer to our biggest moments on the court. We all wanted to win, but the strength in our relationships opened the door to success through things like trust, accountability, better communication (especially listening), ownership of our program and role identification. Our biggest moment came during our conference playoffs. We hosted the quarterfinals for the first time in school history. We were up 66-62 with less than 2 minutes left. The next time we got the ball over half court, we were down 68-66. We took a quick shot and missed. Tough stretch. So at this point we were down by 2 with 23 on the game clock and 15 on the shot clock, and it was our opponents ball. They called time out and we discussed in the huddle - Did we buckle down, defend and rebound? or did we foul? The players made the decision - not me - and we played it out. We got a stop, got the board and raced down into a dribble hand off and made a 3 at the buzzer. We won the game and advanced to the semi finals of the confer