Am I a Part of the SOLUTION?

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Coach #1: "These kids, these days! How can I be expected to get them to learn anything? How can I get them to win? They are so soft, hard work is definitely not in their vocabulary! And they never LISTEN! It seems every time I try to coach them up- 1 on 1- nothing improves. Why should I even try?"

Coach #2: "You ever think that maybe if you changed your approach, you might get different results? Dare, I say, your approach might be part of the problem."

Coach #1: "Are you kidding me??!! I AM definitely NOT the problem!"

Getting through to our players (teenagers for all you parents out there!) is no easy task. However, to DISMISS THEM because we aren't communicating can't be the only solution. We were made to live in community, to work together, to build each other up, to interact…it's how we are made, and that includes the TOUGH people in our lives, including our players and our teenage children.


Pat Summitt won 8 National Championships at University of Tennessee and 1,098 wins total in her coaching career!

Successful coaches find a way to win. And they don't win by themselves, they win with the people around them, no matter how dysfunctional those people are. It doesn't matter what their personality is, they find a way to win. They can be the high achiever coach-AKA-"the mover and shaker". He/She wants results and is strong-willed enough to make sure it happens, whether that means pushing, pulling, directing, persuading, whatever. Sure they can appear insensitive and harsh, but that doesn't mean they don't care about their players, they just want them to get it done….to make plays!


Jimmy Valvano and Dereck Whittenburg after North Carolina State's "impossible" win over Houston in the 1983 NCAA title game.

But coaches come in all shapes and sizes. Although, for many, the stereotype of the "driver" coach is the norm, there are many types of coaches, coaches that win plenty of championships as well. Some have tons of personality and charm. They are engaging, supportive, persuasive and relationship-oriented; a player's coach. Of course, we all love playing for coaches like these men and women, they are devoted, trustful and loyal to the team.


Nick Saban and the University of Alabama's football team has won 3 of the last 4 BCS National Championship games.

Some coaches are so smart, so into the game, it's just hard to get a grasp of them. The game is their life! And with the game getting more and more complicated, especially at the professional levels, these coaches are becoming more and more numerous. Precision and perfection is what wins games, they'll exclaim. And if they appear withdrawn, quiet or even sullen at times, it's not that they don't like their people, it's just that their mind is in another place.


No matter what type of coach we are, we are all expected to "reach" our players. Because no matter what our personality type is, there is a team full of personalities that need our love, direction, support, instruction and expertise. They need it so they can be the best players they can be for your team, but they also need it so they can be the best people they can be, for the teams they will lead in their lifetimes. We need to be the SOLUTIONS for our kids. We need to want to HELP THEM as much as we want to WIN. And we should expect problems to occur in this process. For, indeed, all of us can be the problem from time to time. Instead the question should be, Am I a Part of the SOLUTION? Because as coaches and parents, if we aren't part of the solution, what are we?


Personality Test---Social Styles Survey

It's always enlightening to discover more about ourselves as people. Above is social styles survey that SportsLeader uses in training sessions with coaches and players to help teams understand the various personality styles on the team. Take a look and give it a try, for as Thomas a Kempis said,

"A humble knowledge of thyself is a surer way to God than a deep search after learning."