Coaching is hard.
It’s actually not that hard to just coach, but to be a Coach. That’s hard.
Recently I had a conversation with a coach in which they noted that coaching seemed to be getting harder! More tough conversations, more hard decisions…
As she looked closer it was the simple yet challenging act of communicating and holding everyone to program standards that made it hard.
All change is hard, yet having standards as standard operating procedure makes everything easier. Clarity is queen.
Coach, do you rank your players on various metrics? Maybe even as simple as “he’s an A player, but has a B (or C) attitude”. If you use numbers, does a “1” player with a “3” attitude equate to a kid who’s a “2” in both in your estimation?
Putting aside the fact that I’d like to know your qualifying standards (how do you measure??!?), is averaging the way to go? Do you have a number that you’d like your team to be at?
What’s the optimal combination of traits and of players?
Why not define the standards and hold everyone to all of them instead?
Coaches, be boring.
Spend the time to know-really know-what you care about, what your language is, what the standards are…what’s this thing all about?
If you have a simple set of terms that work for you on and off the field, a glossary that everyone knows, it doesn’t matter if people have a variety of accents.
Coaches who say the same thing over and over, in a language that people understand are not boring, they are consistent and easy to play for.
And they often win.
The social media era we live in allows so much great, positive and useful sharing of knowledge.
It also allows us to regurgitate others’ ideas without thought of what WE think, and how this idea might impact OUR work.
I’ve resolving to stop simply “liking” or “sharing” quotes, concepts or articles I see online. It’s too easy and I’m not getting the most out of it, nor are my teams or others who pay attention to the things I post (if there is anyone on that list!?).
So, I will consider and at the very least comment on these things so that I gain insight into what I really care about, become more judicious in my sharing and most importantly, develop my own WHO and WHY more fully.
We don’t spend time on strategies when learning how to talk.
Mostly, as babies, we listen to the adults around us, we watch as they are communicating and we do the same.
There really is typically not in a how-to guide to communication for developing humans. But there should be for organizations.
Organizations and teams that spend time with specifics–who strategize about how they best communicate–can make themselves into more effective communicators.
Every organization needs their own how-to guide. AND, they need to revise and rewrite it regularly.
Does this org value top-down manuals that tell people what to do? Do you want completely open, everyone-can-say-anything systems? Some hybrid? Decide what you want it to look like, and not look like, and get to work building it.*
*the “it” can really be anything.
I live in the Northeastern part of the US and operate in the Eastern Time Zone, usually. This year I’ve spent a lot of time outside of that zone.
The travel is great fun for the most part and meeting people from diverse backgrounds and with really different life experiences from mine is a great opportunity to learn and be learned from.
As I travel, and when I’m home and talking to someone far away, almost always the first question asked or answered is, “what time is it there?” We have a need to know what the other person is experiencing.
Or, is it something else?
If we look to get an idea of where our friend is in the world, physically, then why does it seem so challenging to get people to see another’s perspective emotionally, or see things through their eyes?
“What time is it there?” is not the same as “How are you?”. But, is it more like: “I want to be sure I have all of the facts before I say anything stupid,” or “I care about you and want to know what your day is like?”
It’s probably both. Think about it the next time you ask.
When someone says, “it’s personal”, they usually mean that they don’t want to talk about that it.
It’s often used as a replacement for, “none of your business”, or “leave me alone”.
So, let’s say what we mean.
Almost everything we talk about is personal. Most humans talk about their own thoughts & feelings more than anything else.
No more using “it’s personal” as an excuse. Be precise with your language.