Anaheim Ducks Require a Change in Team Culture and Identity

Anaheim Ducks head coach Dallas Eakins Mandatory Credit: Matt Kartozian-USA TODAY Sports
Anaheim Ducks head coach Dallas Eakins Mandatory Credit: Matt Kartozian-USA TODAY Sports /
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Anaheim Ducks
BOSTON, MASSACHUSETTS – MAY 30: Tyler Johnson #10 of the Brooklyn Nets (Photo by Maddie Malhotra/Getty Images) /

 How to Create a Culture Shift

This leads us to one of the modern-day buzz words of “culture.” The culture of a place creates norms of what is acceptable behavior and what is not. A clear culture creates an environment in which each member is aware of how they should act, communicate, cooperate, resolve conflict, and so forth.

In and of itself, team culture will never stay entirely stagnant. As different people move in and out of any organization they bring their own personalities to the fore. Yet, even so, culture permeates the very fabric of a team, and even the newest of faces are somewhat brought into the fold. Whether the atmosphere is relaxed or tense, light-hearted or competitive, supportive of each other or indirect competition, that environment will shape the team and the direction they head in.

Take for example the Brooklyn Nets: Some five years ago, they were in a position in which they were the ugly duckling of the NBA, with no draft picks and aging roster and big luxury tax bills. Today they have a roster that many teams are surely envious of. Yet, it took them many twists and turns to get from then to now.

Initially, they fostered a culture of development, with that attitude of sacrificing the self for the good of the many. It’s a culture shift that many hockey teams would pay lip service to in the sense that blocking shots is considered to be sacrificing the body in order to achieve success for the team at that moment.

Four years after commencing this cultural shift, the Nets pivoted from a developmental culture to one built around winning. They still aim to develop their younger players and they still play hard for each other with as little ego as a team with three top-10 players in the league can muster.

Yet, the primary focus now is on winning championships. ESPN’s Power Rankings has them in the top spot in the league, with their championship window, not playoff window, but championship window, wide open for three more years.