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5 Leadership Necessities for Successful Coaches


Leadership Necessities

In order to be a successful basketball coach you need to have a lot more tools in your toolbox than just a mastery of on-court X’s and O’s. One of these tools that will impact a team’s wins and loses is the coach’s personal leadership skills. After analyzing both successful and unsuccessful coaches I believe that there are 5 must-have-leadership-necessities that coaches need to have in order to successfully lead their team.

Leadership Necessity #1: Successful Coaches Are Driven By Goals

Almost every success story starts with someone who possessed a goal or vision that they wanted to achieve. Successful coaches are able to strategize and put into action a plan to turn their goals into a reality. In addition, successful leaders know how to persevere in the face of adversity. They understand that there will be obstacles in their way and how they choose to handle those obstacles will largely determine whether or not their goals transpire.

Leadership Necessity #2: Successful Coaches Are Able to Relate to Others

When asked what profession coaches are in, experienced coaches will often respond by saying that they are in the people-business. More than ever, players today want coaches who they can trust and relate too. Players want a coach who can explain the “whys” of the game while also being someone who can connect with them off the court as a person and not just as a player. If you are not building impactful relationships with your players off the court you are not maximizing the platform that coaching provides you.

Leadership Necessity #3: Successful Coaches Know How to Motivate Their Team

I personally believe that if there was one area that the majority of coaches neglect, it is that of player motivation. Today, athletes are no longer willing to work just because they were told to do so. They need to be motivated. Successful coaches understand this and will focus their efforts on appealing to the intrinsic needs of their athletes thus creating long term self motivation.

Leadership Necessity #4: Successful Coaches Lead by Example

Perhaps one of the simplest ways to motivate others is to simply lead by example. The old philosophy of “do as I say not as I do” doesn’t hold any merit with today’s youth. Instead if you want to create a positive, hard working, high integrity culture with your team it must first start with you and your staff. You must be willing to roll up your sleeves and go to work!

Leadership Necessity #5: Successful Coaches Hold Themselves Personally Accountable For Their Actions

One of the most frustrating characteristics that a coach can have is to be someone who refuses to take any accountability for their actions. Coaches like this tend to be quick to blame others for their mistakes while all to eager to take the credit for other’s successes. Successful coaches take responsibility for their actions while also giving praise when praise is deserved. By being a coach who admits their mistakes and celebrates the success of others, you are setting yourself up to be a credible authoritative figure.

In a time where negativity seems to lurk at every corner, athletes now more than ever need positive leaders in their lives. The five leadership behaviors mentioned above will allow you to not only increase your chances of winning more games, but also allow you to have a positive impact on your athlete’s lives.

Written By Dave Stricklin

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