There are many reasons why the man, the myth, the legend Michael Jordan is so so successful. For a notoriously private man, many people theorised as to how and why Jordan became one of the most successful and wealthy sportsman in history. He was known to be meticulous in preparation, tireless in practice, and unrelenting in everything he put his mind to. If Jordan wanted to succeed at something, he wouldn’t stop until he got it!
According to his book, Michael Jordan The Life, one of his main strengths was his unquenchable thirst for info, his desire to learn and improve, many believe it was his inherent ability to learn and be taught that made him the success he is today. It seemed to many that Jordan was the perfect pupil, he was arguably the most teachable player going, a strength that made him a sponge to new information and self-development. Add to this a drive and determination to be the best at whatever he did, which according to his father was a bit of a problem at first:
‘He had a competition problem. He was born with it… the person he tries to outdo most of the time is himself’
It is the combination of skill, unrelenting drive, and a willingness to take on information and learn from others that contributed to his success. Learning was what he did, be it academically or in the sporting sense, and this really came into play when Jordan enrolled at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill in 1981.
Basketball was his priority
From the moment he entered the University campus, Jordan stamped his authority in the basketball team helping them to win the NCAA Division 1 Championships in his first full year, with Jordan scoring the winning basket against Georgetown University. Following on from this he was awarded NCAA College Player of the Year in 1983 and 1984…this, as we all know, was a taste of what was to come. He was drafted into the NBA after his junior year at Uni, playing for Chicago Bulls Jordan went on to win rookie of the year and was selected for the All- Star game… quite an impact for a young man.
Despite his incredible impression in basketball, Jordan completed his bachelor’s degree in Geography whilst playing professional basketball. Following on from this he became the first person since Wilt Chamberlain to score more than 3,000 points in a single season…prolific on and off the court it seems. The 1986-87 season was a big one for him, but it was 1988 that saw Jordan achieve his first Most Valuable Player Award, setting a precedence for the future which saw him win it again in 1991, 92’, 96’ and 98’… a total of 5 times!
A born leader
With everything that Jordan did, he led by example, this made him a gifted leader of people, a motivator and shining example of what to be on and off the court. Not only was he powerful on the court demonstrating some of the most ferocious slam dunks of all time, but he exuded power off the court too. These were traits that saw him secure sponsorship deals with the likes of Nike, a company he would later endorse and work closely with to develop his trademark Air Jordan trainer range. Michael Jordan may be a discreet man who doesn’t relish being in the public eye now that his playing days have finished, but his messages are clear… Be disciplined, have focus, drive and determination to succeed in what it is you have set your sights on, and DO NOT be afraid to listen to and learn from others.
Bio. (2015). Michael Jordan Biography. Retrieved 7th April, 2015, from http://www.biography.com/people/michael-jordan-9358066