January  2005      Vol. 14, No. 1  REAP HOME PAGE  A publication of the Center for Rural Affairs    
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Committing to Continuous Improvement

Pat Riley is known as one of the most successful coaches in NBA history not because hes had excellent players, but because he was committed to constant improvement.

In 1987, Riley told his players it would make a major difference to the team if all players increased the quality of their game by 1 percent over their personal bests. This increase seemed ridiculously small, but when the 12 players each increased their performance by 1 percent in five skill areas, the combined effort would make a 60 percent improvement to the team. A 10 percent difference would probably have been enough to win the NBA championship.

The result? Most of the players improved their individual games by at least 5 percent. Success came because everyone believed it was achievable. The sense of certainty in pursuit of their goals made them tap even greater potential.

 Contact: Jeff Reynolds, REAP Program Director, 402.656.3091 or jeffr@alltel.net .
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