10 life lessons from legendary North Carolina basketball coach Dean Smith


These valuable life lessons are 10 of Coach Smith’s best quotes, which come from his co-authored book, "The Carolina Way: Leadership Lessons from a Life in Coaching," interviews, and pre-practice team meetings.

1. Stay humble, stay hungry.

"A lion never roars after a kill."

2. What's done is done.

"What to do with a mistake - recognize it, admit it, learn from it, forget it."

3. Give credit where credit is due.

"I do believe in praising that which deserves to be praised."

4. You've got to care to lead.

"The most important thing in good leadership is truly caring. The best leaders in any profession care about the people they lead, and the people who are being led know when the caring is genuine and when it's faked or not there at all."

5. Act with honor and integrity.

"Good people are happy when something good happens to someone else."

6. At the end of the day, it's just a game.

"If you make every game a life and death proposition, you're going to have problems. For one thing, you'll be dead a lot."

7. Surround yourself with winners.

"I would never recruit a player who yells at his teammates, disrespected his high school coach, or scores 33 points a game and his team goes 10-10."

8. Value what's most important.

"As soon as you try to describe a close friendship, it loses something."

9. Lead by example.

"A leader's job is to develop committed followers. Bad leaders destroy their followers' sense of commitment."

10. Never underestimate teamwork.

"Play hard. Play smart. Play together.


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