Episode 37: What Makes Great Teams Great, with Don Yaeger
Don Yaeger is a nationally acclaimed inspirational speaker, longtime Associate Editor of Sports Illustrated and author of 25 books, nine of which have become New York Times Best-sellers. He began his career at the San Antonio (TX) Light and also worked at the Dallas Morning News and the Florida Times-Union in Jacksonville before going to work for Sports Illustrated.
As an author, Don has written books with, among others, Hall of Fame running back Walter Payton, UCLA basketball Coach John Wooden, baseball legends John Smoltz and Tug McGraw and football stars Warrick Dunn and Michael Oher (featured in the movie The Blind Side). He teamed with Fox News anchor Brian Kilmeade to pen the 2013 best-seller “George Washington’s Secret Six,” a look at the citizen spy ring that helped win the Revolutionary War and then again in 2015 writing “Thomas Jefferson and the Tripoli Pirates: The Forgotten War that Changed American History.”
Don left Sports Illustrated in 2008 to pursue a public speaking career that has allowed him to share stories learned from the greatest winners of our generation with audiences as diverse as Fortune 10 companies to cancer survivor groups, where he shares his personal story. More than a quarter-million people have heard his discussions on What Makes the Great Ones Great.
What you’ll learn about in this episode:
- Don’s background
- Learning from mentors from afar
- Don’s new book “Great Teams”
- Why it’s so important to understand your “why” — and what Don’s “why” was while writing his new book
- What great teams look like — and what they all do to keep achieving greatness
- The four pillars of great teams: purpose, effective management, activating efficiency, and mutual direction
- How Don defines organizational culture
- What “A Players” are
- How to prepare for top employees leaving by having a strong bench
- Why Don is a very open leader with his team
- Why Don makes sure he learns something every day