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Hoops and heroes aren’t made in isolation – winning takes a team

Michael Jordan was a superstar, but he didn’t play alone. Science, like basketball, is a team undertaking, and must continue to refresh its roster

In the mid-1990s, Michael Jordan reigned supreme as the world’s most famous sports star.

If, like me, you’ve been watching the Netflix documentary series The Last Dance, it’s plain to see why. The greatest basketball player of all time, Jordan transformed a moribund Chicago Bulls team into the most successful franchise in the sport, winning an unprecedented six NBA championships.

Despite this, Jordan and the Bulls’ general manager, Jerry Krause, did not get on, and barely spoke after the manager was quoted as saying that “players don’t win championships, organisations do”.

Jordan took this as a personal affront, although Krause insisted that he had been misquoted and had actually said that players don’t win championships “alone”, which is true enough.

What has all this got to do with higher education, I hear you ask?

Well, there are parallels in the hypercompetitive natures of professional sport and science.

The relentless and ruthless pursuit of excellence, a tendency to ascribe success to brilliant individuals and overlook the contribution of others, and to elevate stars to celebrity status all resonate.

Fame can be fickle, of course, as a number of scientists thrust into the limelight by the Covid-19 crisis have discovered – and the risks to public trust as a result of that heightened public profile are becoming clear.

Scientists advising the UK government stand accused of suffering from Stockholm syndrome, as questions about the response stack up, while others warn that the politicians’ mantra that they are being guided by “the science” is a pre-emptive defence for the inevitable public inquiry.

In our opinion pages, John Tregoning, reader in respiratory infections at Imperial College Londonargues that too much focus on individuals misunderstands the real power of university research as a collective effort. What is more, he writes, it can be toxic: “Much of what is wrong with academia is driven by the narrative that it is a zero-sum game, where only one person can come out on top.”

Shifting the narrative to the collaborative, collegiate nature of research could also “de-risk the process for the individuals, the institutions and the ideas themselves”, he suggests, particularly since “in an increasingly combative media space, any perceived fault can be manipulated to damage a broader theme”.

A case in point is to be found in our news pages, where we report on one of Germany’s best-known virologists, Christian Drosten, who has found himself in the unfamiliar position of having the country’s most-read tabloid newspaper, Bildattacking his scientific methods.

Elsewhere in our news pages, we report on fears that the financial shock of the pandemic will have a devastating impact on early career researchers, sinking the prospects of a generation.

With many universities implementing hiring freezes and axeing fixed-term contracts, PhD students and early career researchers will already be among the hardest hit.

The potential for that to get a lot worse very quickly was highlighted by Michael Arthur, provost of UCL, who is quoted in a recent article by Tortoise saying that his institution has more than 1,000 staff on funded contracts that end between April and September this year.

“Many of these are post docs who would ordinarily get a new grant or might change departments, institutions or go into industry,” he said.

“What I’m worried about is that these opportunities may no longer be there and the UK’s research infrastructure will be deeply damaged in the long-term as a result.”

The impact of this on the individuals will be a tragedy, but the impact will also be devastating for science and research itself – as is pointed out in our news story by Simon Marginson, professor of higher education at the University of Oxford. “There’s going to be a lost generation of researchers unless we’re very, very sensible and smart about how we handle this,” he warns.

Talk to those on the ground, and it is plain to see the toll this is taking on individuals.

There will be those who say that the attrition rate for PhDs and early career researchers has always been high; that it is not the fault of science that the alternative career paths are currently in disarray; and that the hard reality is that there will always be another cohort coming up behind, providing talent and energy to keep labs running when the financial situation improves.

But there will surely be a compounding effect on output and quality if a generation of scientific talent is lost. And if that is allowed to happen, then academia will also have lost sight of the finely balanced ecosystem in which scientific excellence thrives.

Preserving opportunities for the current cohort of rookies will not be a slam dunk, but as Michael Jordan once said, “talent wins games, but teamwork wins championships”. Which I think is what Jerry Krause was trying to say, too.

john.gill@timeshighereducation.com

Originally published: https://www.timeshighereducation.com/opinion/hoops-and-heroes-arent-made-isolation-winning-takes-team

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Miserable Situation of Sports Facilities in Sukheki

Watch my take ( 3:05- 5:00): Now a days ground is the main issue of sukheke mandi 1985 – 2020 have a long period of time but still there is no play ground of this town . 1 Lack ki Abadi m ak b play ground ni hay…

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7 Best Habits of Strategic Leaders

  1. Calm. Your folks, your employees, your customers, your suppliers, are going to be looking to you as a leader to project a sense of calm through this difficult, uncertain situation.
  2. Confidence. You have to be calm, but not still-water calm. You have to project confidence that you’re going to be able to see this through successfully, with a minimum amount of hurt to the company, but also to all of the stakeholders who are relying on your leadership to get them through the difficult days and months ahead.
  3. Communication. You have to relentlessly communicate, communicate, communicate. This is to avoid rumors developing that muddy the waters. But when I’m talking about communication, I’m also talking about a strategy for communication. You need a sense of order in which to communicate decisions and priorities, but also have rapid communication to the entire body of constituents—not delays over hours or days or, even worse, weeks. Silence is absolutely the worst possible thing that you allow to happen, because that’s when the rumor mill develops.
  4. Collaboration. You are not going to know all the answers; no one expects you to. This is a time for you to call on the resources, the capabilities of all of your employees, all of your team members, and bring them together in task forces, sub-task forces, and potentially have a role for everyone in which they feel they can contribute to overcoming the uncertainty, overcoming the crisis. Engaging employees in this way will also reduce that rumor mill, give confidence to them that they will then project in turn to the people who are relying on them as their managers for direction.
  5. Community. All of us live in communities. Our factories are in communities, our colleges and universities are in communities. We are leading by example, not just within our organizations, but within our broader communities. And especially since we’re talking here about an infectious virus, it’s extremely important that we set an example, model behaviors that are community friendly and supportive.
  6. Compassion is extremely important at this time. We may rise to the occasion if we’re fortunate to have a good team around us, but there are many people in our organizations who are depending upon us, who are not necessarily that resilient. And they need to be given the compassion to express their concerns. So, think of someone in your organization who has elderly parents in a fragile state of health. They’re going to be doubly concerned about relatives at this time when the virus is potentially affecting the most vulnerable and medically challenged in our communities. If they want time off, if they want to work from home, if they need to have a little bit of space to look after their family members, please consider giving that to them. Compassion at a time of crisis is a very important manifestation of leadership.
  7. Cash. The most obvious commercial C of the 7 Cs is Cash. Cash is king at a time of crisis, and everything needs to be done to look both short term and long term at the financial health of the organization. After all, your employees, suppliers, and customers are depending upon you to lead, not just emotionally but also prudently with respect to the long-term finances of the organization. Whatever you can do to conserve cash is going to be critical, because that’s what’s going to determine whether your employees are going to be paid next week.
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“Building a Promising Future”

What we are going to do?

University of Success (UoS) Islamabad, under PARAS Education Services is kicking off with its extra ordinary one day master class on “Building a Promising Future” for your personal and professional development. For the first time in Pakistan, University of Success has crafted this brilliant training by NLP Experts and Life Coaches from core teams of John Maxwel, Tony Robinson in USA and Olde Vechte Foundation in Netherlands.

Why we are going to do: Core Objective:

“Building a Promising Future” aims to empower the participants with necessary knowledge, skills, attitude and exposure to identify their bottom lines, recognizing their hidden potential and taking undertaking actions for career enhancement needs, financial freedom, handling failures, educational success and defeating fears to make breakthrough in their lives.

What we shall be talking about?

  • Career Counseling by Mahwish Khokar
  • Intentional Living by Asif A. Malik
  • Self Confidence & Public Speaking by Dr. Tuba Khan
  • Handling Failures and Defeating Fears by Dr. Ahmad Waqas

What is Take Away for Participants?

  • Give us the opportunity to bring the best in You
  • Prepare for the future with our professional life coaches and NLP experts.
  • Pave your personal, academic and professional pathways with the utmost and imperative training session and experimental learning activities.
  •  Understand the laws of invaluable growth so that you will grow and be successful
  • Learn, network and grow with our inner circle with shared experiences in a challenging and  friendly environment
  • Understand the laws of invaluable growth so that you will grow and be successful
  • Access your leadership strength and weakness. Underline your bottom-line and take action to make breakthrough.
  • Develop and practice the behavior required to effectively grow yourself and others
  • Identify ways to incorporate and apply the 21 irrefutable laws of leadership by John Maxwel in your life and business each day
  • Begin the process of building up your sense of purpose and become more successful in every area of life.
  • Use your words and body language to purposefully instill self-confidence
  • Create and sustain a positive mental attitude, especially during hard times

Trainers/Speakers

  • Dr. Ahmad Waqas: NLP Professional, Life Coach and Financial Freedom Expert. He is Certified Speaker, Coach and leadership trainer from John MAxwell Team, USA. Second Pakistani who is certified from John Maxwell. He helps in making life more passionate more beautiful and more interesting. He is the person who will help you move your life to next level and will show you ways to improve your life and grow further.
  • Mahwish Rajput, is Public Speaker, Researcher, Writer, Personal Development Trainer and having estensive experience of working as journalist with Voice of America. Mahwish has nearly 15 years of trainer exposure and industry experience which spans across different regions.
  • Dr. Tuba Khan, is a Physician, NLP Expert, Life Coach, Motivational Speaker, Saudia Arabia born and currently based in Houston USA.
  • Asif A. Malik, Speaker on Self-Development, Writer in Daily Times, Vlogger, Co-Founder University of Success, Pakistan, Chairman PARAS Education Services, certified in Leadership and Personal Development from Presidential Academy of National Economy and Public Administration, PGLS Moscow, Russia and 35th Event Wise, Olde Vechte Foundation, Ommen Netherlands. He is emerging public speaker with extensive national and international experience of traveling and working with global networks of universities on youth empowerment, personal development and career counselling in Russia, Africa, Europe and South Asia

Venue & Schedule:

Saturday, March 14, 2010 from 9:00 AM to 1:00 PM, at Genial Spot, St#5, Royal Avenue, Mehrban Colony, Park Road, Islamabad

Apply till March 13, 2020 and join the Master Class to enhance your personal and professional skills.

For Registrations:

Afza ChaudhryEvent Coordinator, University of Success, IslamabadContact: 092 (0) 330-5696379, 0321-5027688, 
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/University-of-Success-Islamabad