Working together is fun. Being on the same page with other people, finding a solution that requires others to add energy to the system, to match up the gears with colleagues, is a great way to move things forward.
That’s why so many of us love team sports, and why people pay to do the same workout with others that they could do for free by themselves.
Being around other people gives us energy. Working with others gets us to the intersection of enthusiasm and hard work. This is true on a team, within a coaching staff, position group, office pod or neighborhood.
Without a structured plan, however, working with a group can be annoying and unproductive. In team sports, this is where the “one chief” model becomes important. Someone needs to direct the work, start the music, evaluate the needs of the group.
How do you make working with others one way you get better as a coach?
In a world full of throwaway lines, one that gets me is, “don’t ever change!”.
Why would that be a thing you’d like to do? Why would person A not want person B to work to improve, to test new and better things, or at least to prove that the things they do currently really are the way to go?
We should always be growing, learning, indeed, changing. And, while we’re at it we should be mentoring, teaching and growing others.
Changing equals growing. So, “change!” need not mean to become something totally different or to get rid of the skills and habits that make you great, but to grow them and grow others along the way.
How could you grow yourself ?
Are you one of the millions who pays attention through blogs, Tweets or books to the ways that those who have “made it” structure their lives?
Do you follow people, learn their habits and work to implement some of those things into your life? Me, too.
Do they work? Do you stick to them? Do you really know what works for you? Because if you don’t know then you’re not testing them well enough.
To me it’s not the ‘working’, it’s the ‘knowing’. If someone else’s routine or plan for a situation is a good one for you then for sure you should steal it! If not, then you should pitch it and find another way.
Development of an assessment system that you can use for everything from morning routines to practice planning to developing players and assistants is a key to moving forward.
Test it. Ready, set, go.
Coaches, we hear, “know thyself” all the time. Starting by doing the work to know what we value, our team’s strengths and holes in our game can certainly help you in preparing your team for a competition.
Also, know your opponent. On the face of it, a good scouting report on their players can be helpful on game day.
Dig deeper, however, watch your competition with a holistic eye. Pay attention to the undercurrent, feel the ebbs and flows of their style and energy. Aim to see holes where they don’t even know they have them.
Find the “secret” to their game, the go-to or the “hope not”, the points in a game where they are most vulnerable or lose their positive energy…see those and attack them there and then.
If you make it, then you’re a fake?
Making it ain’t all that. Faking it’s just what we do. It’s all a fake operation until we test it, believe in it and make it a must-do for our personal system. Even then you might not be fully bought in.
So, yes, “fake it”, but don’t call it that. Be, then do, then you have what you have.
Rinse and repeat and love the mess!
Forward momentum is enhanced by testing, guessing, making mistakes and accepting partial credit or incomplete solutions.
We’re told to work intentionally now, but…be ok with thinking about the future, but…not too much.
We pass along this approach to our players, too.
The present is important, yet fleeting. It’s easy to either be complacent, or consistently dissatisfied.
Do you feel this? Do you pass along this angst to your team?
Working to be our best, currently, is really all we can do.
It takes an inner peace (conscious or not) to be satisfied right now, to not ruminate on the past or solely anticipate the future. When “what about…” comes into play we become less content.
So they say. For most, “the time is now”, means that pretty soon we’d better get ready to try to act. Pretty soon, as in: not right now, but sometime soon.
Mindfulness is the word of the moment (get it?), “live in the present” is something we encourage and cajole our future selves to do, and yet things don’t get done. They get thought about, planned, to-do listed…but done?
It’s time to start doing. Share it, invite comment, see what others think, see if it works. I’ll go first.