It’s not just how well your team plays that is a judge of your success. It is far more complicated than that.
If you happen to coach a winning team this does not automatically make you a good coach. Just as if you coach a team with a losing record doesn’t automatically make you a less effective coach.
Good coaches build significant relationships with their athletes. They treat them with respect. They build, rather than tear down self-esteem…(make a player feel crummy about him/herself, and that player will consistently under-perform for you.)
Good coaches have winning and losing in perspective. (It’s a known fact that the more emphasis you place on the outcome of the game or match, the less chance your athletes have of reaching that outcome.)
Good coaches understand that their primary job is to teach athletes how to be good people as well as skilled performers. If you build a trusting, caring relationship with your players they’ll go to the “max” for you. You’ll get to winning far faster by teaching your players “silly” concepts like commitment, honesty, caring, mutual respect, teamwork, sportsmanship, etc.
And the primary way you teach these things? By who you are and the relationship that you build with each and every one of your athletes.
Do you want to be an incredible motivator? Then build solid relationships with your athletes.
Ponder this one question. How many “coach-of-the-year” awards are given to the coach with a mediocre record who is adored by his athletes because he is honest, respectful and teaches his players how to feel good about themselves, how to be better people, how to play well together as a team, how to effectively handle success and failure, the importance of having character, a positive attitude and good sportsmanship? I know, these seem like such “minor” lessons when compared to winning and losing…
Your challenge as a coach is to not get yourself so caught up in this “winning is everything” mentality that you lose sight of what’s really important and what a truly successful coach is. And the funny thing about this is that the less your ego is caught up with winning, the more you’ll end up winning!
Dr. Alan Goldberg, is a nationally recognized expert, author and clinician in the field of sport psychology and performance psychology with years of experience working across all sports with athletes at every level.