What does an NBA superstar, top CEO, Lieutenant General, and champion athlete all have in common? They’re all masters of teamwork. Across their diverse lives and many triumphs, they’ve amassed unique perspectives on leadership, continuous improvement, and getting the job done.

At Made Extraordinary, a free two-day event hosted by SafetyCulture, Earvin “Magic” Johnson, athlete Diana Nyad, Lieutenant General Nadja West, and No. 3 CEO in the world, Bob Chapman, will share the tips they live and succeed by.

Here are a few favorites I’ve managed to get a sneak peek at:

Tip No. 1: Lead with empathy. — Nadja West

More and more organizations are finding that greater opportunities to encourage productivity no longer lie in extrinsic rewards. Instead, the future of work requires a focus that highlights human capabilities such as curiosity, imagination and creativity. This means that it’s crucial for leaders to create safe spaces for team members to be curious, imaginative and creative. To achieve this begins with empathy. What does empathetic leadership look like in practice? Nadja West, the U.S. Army’s first African-American three-star General, puts empathy at the heart of missions.

“It was important that every individual understood how their job contributed to our mission,” shared West. “It was up to me as their leader to make sure they saw themselves as important to achieving it.”

To get the best out of your teams, take the time to understand your team members. Learn what matters to them and what motivates them, and you’ll unlock new possibilities, even beyond their comfort zones. Empathy is needed more than ever during these isolating times. It goes without saying that leaders are often stretched, so start by making small interactions more meaningful.

Tip No. 2: You don’t need to be a leader to lead. — Nadja West

Contrary to popular opinion, you don’t need to be in a managerial position to be a leader. If you’re in a position to influence others around you, it gives you the opportunity to practice leadership. This means that every single person, no matter what their job title is, has the power to lead.

Now think of it like this: If you’re a leader of leaders, then what and how you communicate to these leaders is critical. If you want your team to hit its goals, let them know. If you want your team to prioritize collaboration, again, let them know. The core tenets of leadership are providing purpose, direction and motivation. Communicate these things clearly; be explicit as possible. Once your message is effectively communicated, teams will respond in kind.

Tip No. 3: Never, ever give up. — Diana Nyad

Positions of leadership often thrust you outside of your comfort zone into difficult or uncertain situations. However, that’s also where achieving the extraordinary starts — with discomfort. Our job is to find that sense of tenacity when operations hit a brick wall. Diana Nyad would be the first to attest to that, as a world champion athlete and the first person to swim from Cuba to Florida.

Diana isn’t one to quit. On her fifth attempt, she accomplished an extreme 110-mile swim at the age of 64. She may have been dazed and physically spent, but she showed the world what persistence and bold spirit can manifest. How does this play out in our organizations? While ambiguity around the pandemic abounds, there’s never been a better time to evolve as a team and push forward. Be ready to anticipate various setbacks and be open to changing course.

Tip No. 4: Recognize and celebrate the goodness in people. — Bob Chapman

To foster work collaboration, especially in a work-from-home environment, leaders need to think about how to reward their team members. It’s key to recognize everyone’s unique gifts and talents, especially in those who don’t see it within themselves. Bob Chapman calls this Truly Human Leadership, which is about discovering special gifts and skills in those around you, and nurturing them into something bigger than themselves.

Put simply, people want to know that their work is somehow meaningful. At SafetyCulture, we have a dedicated company Slack channel for team shout-outs. We’re encouraged to share when colleagues have epitomized company values or stepped up to support. It’s by far one of our most engaged channels.

On a day-to-day level, small daily acts to recognize team members’ efforts and progress can create an environment where people feel seen. This could be done in a direct message or a simple note of appreciation via email. In workplaces where corporate culture isn’t championed, it can be easy to forget to do something this simple.

For more lessons in extraordinary leadership and teamwork, look no further than our upcoming global summit, Made Extraordinary. This is your launchpad to level up. Reserve your FREE seat today.