Are You A Team Leader?
Being an effective leader, either in the work force or on a basketball team, can make or break a team. You can't underestimate the power of a great leader.
As I watch youth in middle school and into high school play it is easy to see there is a tremendous lack of leadership in today's game. As a team sport basketball thrives on leadership starting with the coaching staff and into the players. All successful teams have people in charge that know how to lead people.
Good leaders are people who have learned some key elements in how to motivate others around them. I am confident anyone can work to improve to their leadership skill set. The traits needed to be a successful leader apply to both players and coaches at every level. If the coach is the only leader in the gym; that team won't be very successful. Players need positive pier pressure to be motivated, shaped and kept on track.
Here are some traits that contribute to effective leadership whether you’re in basketball or any profession in life:
Setting High Standards
If you do everything to the best of your ability, then you can expect it from those you lead. If you are always on time, always work hard, and always put your heart and soul into every practice, workout, and game--then you can expect your teammates and players to do the same. But you have to believe your teammates and players can meet this standard. A good leader will motivate those they are leading to do so. You want to be the type of leader who raises the level of everyone around you. Set the bar high and then lead them to it!
Lead by Example
The old saying "do as I say, not as I do" never has and never will fly in today's world. If you expect it from the people you are leading, you have to expect it from yourself. You must hold yourself accountable before you can hold anyone else. If you expect your players or teammates to be on time, then you need to be on time. If you expect them to know every play in your playbook, then you need to know them too. If you want to be a leader, people notice.
Learn From Your Mistakes
To be a good leader you have to take calculated risks and you will certainly make some mistakes along the way. Admit them and learn from them. Don't repeat them! These mistakes can be in the classroom or on the court.
Put Others' Needs First
Compassion and empathy are extremely important to quality leadership. It is impossible to be selfish and be an effective leader. If you are a player, are you playing for the scoreboard or the scorebook? Are you playing for the name on the front of the jersey or the back? If you are a coach, do you listen to your players' feedback and thoughts? Treat your teammates and players right and genuinely care about them.
Your attitude is something you have complete control of and will influence everything you do in life. A positive attitude helps build confidence. You must have a strong self-worth and be confident in your abilities, without being arrogant or cocky. It sounds corny, but you have to feel good about yourself to be a good leader. No one is going to follow someone who doesn't believe in themselves. Confidence comes from a sound work ethic and from being prepared. If you are going into a game and aren't confident you can win; it's because you know you didn't do what was necessary to prepare!
These are just some of the traits needed to be an effective leader. Whether you are the point guard on a high school basketball team or an assistant college coach, your ability to be an effective leader will dictate your success as well as your team's success.
Be the leader your team needs!
Good luck with your game,
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