College

Coach K’s New Platform Is For Leaders Who Lead Leadership

It's every bit as ridiculous as it sounds

College
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Sep 13, 2016 at 12:19 PM ET

Duke head coach Mike Krzyzewski, one of the more hypocritical defenders of amateurism in college sports, has come up with a brand new way to make money beyond the estimated $7.3 million dollars he earns per year.

Along with a dear chum from Bain & Co. and a helping hand from his friendly pals at CAA—because of course—he’s slapped his personal brand on an online “leadership” platform called PowerForward. No, really.

This fine bit of content is not for your average workaday schmo that wants to become a truly great leader, mind you. Unlike his smarmy, only semi-basketball related self help tomes like “Leading With the Heart,” and “Beyond Basketball: Coach K’s Keywords for Success,” PowerForward—for an unknown subscription fee—targets businesses, providing videos and interactive exercises to “empower these emerging leaders to realize their full potential,” according to Chrissie Gorman, PowerForward’s CEO

Let’s see how many times his various investors and partners can blurt out a variation on the word “leader” before it is rendered utterly meaningless.

Coach K’s leadership influence transcends his success on the basketball court, translating seamlessly into meaningful lessons applicable to any area of business.”

— Brian Weinstein, CAA head of global client strategy,

Coach K’s legendary leadership has created many champions both on and off the court.”

— Eddy Cue, Apple senior vice president

With turnover in the workplace, younger employees are increasingly being thrust into leadership roles with limited preparation and limited time to develop as a leader.”

— Chrissie Gorman, PowerForward CEO

This isn’t a rah-rah ‘let’s win one for the team’ pep talk, but specific leadership lessons that translate seamlessly, yet can shift the entire paradigm of corporate leadership needed to inspire today’s ‘disruptive’ workforce.”

—Peter Gruber, Mandalay Entertainment CEO

Okay. Maybe Krzyzewski himself can clear up what the hell any of the individuals involved in this project are talking about. Luckily, Fortune specifically asked him to define “leadership.”

“A great team has ownership from top to bottom,” he said. “It’s not just about having this great leader who’s giving Vince Lombardi speeches. It’s about having leaders throughout the organization.”

Darn. So close. Wanna take another stab at it?

“I love leadership and teamwork,” said Krzyzewski, unaware that words should impart information. “To me, the least taught important thing in business is leadership.”

And what will the non-Coach K leaders contribute to PowerForward?

“We’re asking them to tell a leadership story,” he said. “And maybe that person might come back and tell more because they’ll find that they’re part of this team of leadership.”

Vocativ requested a demo of PowerForward in the hopes that we too might lead our lead-y leaders and learn about leading leadership, but one was not provided prior to publication.