Want more effort from your players? If so, then make sure you reward it. What kinds of awards do you give out as a coach? Are your rewards and awards just for the standard “outcome” goals of your sport – points scored, shooting percentage, runs etc? Not a problem.
Yet, how about rewarding the stuff that leads up to the outcomes? Hustle, defense, assists, picks, floor burns? If you want more of these behaviors from your team, then reward it. I’m not talking about expensive trophies or gifts. Watch today\’s video and discover a simple, inexpensive yet powerful way to get more of what you want out of your players.
February 21, 2009
Bringing your goals to life is achievable and involves a crucial next step—creating an action plan. An action plan details what you are going to do each day in order
Let’s look at an example. Say one of your SMART program goals is
“To teach my players the skill of self-reliance on and off the playing field.”
Now let’s look at how to make this happen on a daily basis:
• Have players write out one (SMART) personal objective for each practice.
• Require players to write out their own scouting report for each competition.
• Require players to self-evaluate and seek out feedback from at least two other teammates about their performance in practice.
• Develop clear norms of culture that your players internalize and then hold each other accountable to.
Without regular attention and action – goals die. Take the time on the front end to write our your goals and action plans… the pay off is huge during the season!
Now it’s time to take your goals and test them against a common business framework. It’s called SMART and is an acronym to help clarify goals. Apply this criterion to your goals as you read through the letters.
• “S” stands for “specific.” Is your goal specific? The question to ask yourself is, “Is it focused?” Often we set goals that are too broad, e.g., “to improve” or “to give 100%.” In theory, these are good ideas, yet it’s hard to get a clear picture of what these mean. You want to set goals that are focused.
• “M” stands for “measurable.” Will you know when you’ve done it? What will you see? Can you count it? Can you time it?
• “A” is “attainable.” Is it realistic? Is it within the realm of possibility for your program?
• “R” stands for “relevant.” Is the goal tied to desired performance? Now look at the goal you set today. Is it relevant?
• “T” is “timely.” By when do you want to achieve your goals – set by what date and check-in dates. Think about the goals you set and decide “by when” you want to achieve them. Write down a by when date for each goal.
By the way, this is an excellent tool to use with your athletes. So lead by example and set SMART goals for your program. Your athletes will model what starts at the top; they’ll follow your lead. Start leading with SMART!
Here’s a handy goal setting sheet for you to use personally and with your team.
You have your philosophy in place. You know how you want to accomplish things. Now it’s time to identify what you want to accomplish as the coach. What are your program goals? What do YOU want to accomplish with YOUR program during your tenure as coach? These are not to be confused with team goals, which are set each season. Program goals are the things you personally want to accomplish as the coach.
As Yogi Berra wisely stated: “You’ve got to be very careful if you don’t know where you’re going, because you might not get there.” You will end up somewhere as a coach—you might as well end up where you’d like to be. Be proactive. Identifying what you would like to accomplish gives you the greatest shot at actually getting there.
So to quote Stephen Covey’s 7 Habits of Highly Successful People, let’s begin with the end in mind. Take a moment and visualize your coaching retirement party. Imagine a wonderful celebration where family, friends and former players gather to honor you as a coach. Imagine it in as much detail as possible – the location, the people, the decorations, the sounds, the smells… Two of your former players will approach the front of the room and will deliver a few remarks and pay tribute to you. What would these players say? What qualities of character would you be remembered for? What contributions would they mention? What important difference have you made in their lives? How do you feel about their words? Look around at the other players in the room. Do you feel you have made an important difference in their lives?
Take a few moments and write down your reflections. What did you learn about where you want to go? What do you need to do now to align yourself with that vision? Be as specific as you can be? If you want your players to remember how you respected them and acknowledged them, how will you do that beginning today? What simple action today drives you toward your goal? If you want you players to acknowledge you for your x’s and o’s execution and how you are a great strategist, then be a student of the game. Make it your study. Whatever the case may be this involves practice and commitment. Small motivations will move you toward integrating the habit into your philosophy and your daily life.