Podcast Episode 175: Leadership Lessons from UConn Head Coach Geno Auriemma

Today’s Wisdom:

Geno Auriemma has 35 years under his belt as the UConn women’s basketball coach and the level of success he’s reached is unparalleled. You don’t win 11 national championships and put together six perfect seasons without being a tremendous leader. No matter what line of work you’re in, Auriemma’s approach to coaching, managing personnel, and business can provide some valuable lessons.

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What You’ll Learn:

When you talk about the greatest coaches of all time, Geno Auriemma’s name will come up in that conversation. The head coach for the Connecticut women’s basketball team has reached levels that very few people in any sport can relate to.

Now entering his 36th year with the Huskies, Auriemma’s list of accomplishments is way too long for us to list here, but if you aren’t familiar with them, we’ll tell you about a few of the highlights. His teams have reached won 11 national championships and haven’t missed a Final Four since 2008. They’ve also recorded six perfect seasons and had a historic winning streak of 126 games end in 2019. How’s that for success?

We asked him to join us on the Money Wisdom podcast to talk about his approach to putting together a team and managing so many types of people through the years. As he says on the show, building relationships is made more successful when you spend time with them beyond the workplace and that’s one aspect of his career that we wanted to learn a lot more about.

As a proud partner of the UConn Huskies, we’ve gotten to know Auriemma through the years but the conversations with them are no less fascinating. Learning about his coaching background and how a boy growing up in Italy turned into one of the all-time greats.

These lessons don’t just apply to basketball either. Auriemma also spends his time as an entrepreneur and business owner with a restaurant, wines, and pasta sauces all in his portfolio. He’s built a program and a brand that is known across the country and internationally.

We think this is an interview you’re really going to enjoy and one that can help you improve yourself. Please share it with your family and friends as well.

[1:43] – Welcome in Coach Auriemma

[1:54] – How he got into basketball living in Italy

[3:24] – Transitioning from player to coach 

[4:58] – How much of coaching is a natural talent?

[6:45] – Can you get too close to your players or the people that work for you in a business?

[8:26] – How do you find the leadership qualities in a player?

[11:22] – Changing your approach based on your personnel

[13:11] – What challenges has COVID created for the team? 

[19:43] – The historic winning streak

[22:18] – If you could talk to any three people in history, who would they be?

Thanks for listening to this episode. We’ll be back again next week for another show.

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Final Thoughts:

“In the corporate world, if you have people that you are managing and you’re trying to get the best out of them, having a relationship with them that goes beyond, ‘Hey I’m the boss, do what I say,” it can only make your business or your team stronger.”

– UConn Head Coach Geno Auriemma, Money Wisdom Podcast

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