Leadership is important part in coaching. If you are like most coaches, you played sports for many years before you began coaching. When you assume the role of coach, you must make the difficult transition of getting things done through others. You can no longer play the game yourself, even though you may earn to do so. Now you have to help your players play the game. The skills needed to do that are not at all the same skills you needed when you were playing. The skills you need now are leadership skills.
Leadership is first knowing how to chart a course, to give others direction by having a vision of what can be. A team without a leader is like a ship without rudder. Second, leadership is developing the social and psychological environment–what business calls the corporate culture and what i will call team culture –to achieve the goals the leader has charted. This culture is created through selecting, motivating, rewarding, retaining, and unifying members of your team, which includes players, assistants, parents, and others who help your organization.
Excellent coaches–leaders–give the team vision and know how to translate this vision into reality. Coaches, in their leadership roles, seek to develop an environment in which every athlete has the maximum opportunity to achieve success and in so doing achieve team success. Coaches as leaders are concerned not only with the physical environement, but also with the psychological and social environments.
Leadership is action designed to influence others toward set goals. It is often confused with management. Management consists of planning, organizing, staffing and recruiting, schedulling, budgeting, and public relations. Leaders perform these function or delegate them to others, but they also do more. Leaders determine the direction for the future and then marshal the resources within the organization to move in that direction. This distinction between management and leadership is significant in sport because too many teams are overmanaged and underled.
Leadership emphasizes interpersonal relationships and has a direct impact on motivation, whereas management does not.
Tom Peters and Nancy Austin wrote in A Passion for Excellence (1985) : Coaching is face-to-face leadership that pulls together people with diverse backgrounds, talents, experience and interests, encourages them to step up to responsibility and continued achievement and treats them as full-scale partners and contributors. Coaching is not about memorizing techniques or devising the perfect game plan. It is about really paying attention to people-really believing them, really caring about them, really involving them.
To be Excellent Leader in Coaching
Coaching is a people business and excellent coaches become students of people. To be an excellent leader-an excellent coach-you must develop the interpersonal skills to move people to action. Communication skills are essential–talking, listening, negotiating, encouraging and consoling. Coaching is as demanding of communication skills as marathoning is of conditioning skills.
People who exert make a difference. Excellence in teams is a product of superior leadership by people who have acquired specific skills that give them both a vision of a future that can be obtained and the ability to commit others to pursue that vision. Excellence doesn’t just happen. It comes from preparing yourself to lead and working hard when leading.
It’s been said that people can be divided into three class : the few who make things happen, the many who watch things happen, and the vast majority who have no idea what happened. There is a ring of truth in that statement.
If you want to be a good coach, you must be among the few who make things happen!.
Refference : Rainer Martens. Successful Coaching. 2004.
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