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What Kobe Bryant’s Shot Record Can Teach Us About Entrepreneurship

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Ice Hockey Hall of Famer Wayne Gretzkey once said, “you miss 100% of the shots you don’t take.” Now, NBA super star Kobe Bryant is taking shots at historic proportions on the basketball court. As of November 12, Bryant was leading the NBA with 27.7 points per game, but as Business Insider Sports reported, he has also taken 18 more shots per game than anybody else in the league during the same time frame.

Making Shots is a Function of Taking Shots

Kobe is taking 25.2 shots per 36 minutes, which is 5.2 shots more than anybody else in the league this season. According to Business Insider, this is the most shots taken per 36 minutes in 33 years and the fifth most shots per 36 minutes in the shot clock era (1954-55 season to present).

Making shots is a function of taking shots. This is an incredibly simple equation and is at the core of a good sales or business development model.

Basketball

s = # of shots taken
a = accuracy (field goal percentage)
g = # of goals

f(s) = a x s = g

Sales

l = # of leads
c = closing ratio
s = sales

f(l) = c x l = s

Shoot for the Moon

A good question to consider when focusing on how to improve your ability to make goals is to question what you’re shooting for. Are your goals aligned with your true passion and vision, and are the goals you’re striving for big enough? I read a book when I was a freshman in college that changed my life, authored by Donald Trump, titled “Think Big and Kick Ass.” There’s a concept that strikes me about Trump’s story, which is summed up by this quote, “as long as you’re going to be thinking anyway, think big.”

More recently, Google’s executive chairman and former CEO, Eric Schmidt, and former SVP of product, Jonathan Rosenberg, talk about the power of thinking big and created a presentation that highlights the main points of their book “How Google Works.” In their presentation they state, “remember big bets can sometimes be easier to achieve than small ones… since they attract the best people.” No matter what you’re seeking to accomplish, it requires cooperation and working with other people. Spending mental energy on small goals, and small problems, can be just as challenging (if not more challenging) as directing efforts towards solving big problems.

If you are going to be shooting anyway, shoot for the moon. Take lots of shots and spend time improving your skills so that you can make more of the shots that you’re taking. These concepts on shooting high, shooting often, and shooting better are what’s made people like Kobe Bryant, Donald Trump, Eric Schmidt, Jonathan Rosenberg, and many others so successful in business and in life.

Calvin Cooper is an associate at NCT Ventures and focuses primarily on market intelligence, competitive analysis, portfolio management, and underserved markets. Prior to joining the NCT family, Calvin served in an executive role at OMSDC where he conducted the merger due diligence and integration of two regional non-profit organizations. He has experience in supplier diversity and business development, connecting diverse owned companies to Fortune 100 corporations. He also helped found and launch the MBE Academy in partnership with the City of Columbus. Additionally, he has public relations and marketing experience that includes publishing the Connections Magazine, government affairs, strategic marketing, and branding initiatives. Calvin earned a Bachelor of Arts degree from Capital University in Financial Economics, and has presented economic research at national conferences.

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