Qualities of a Great Coach
Being a world-class coach requires many more skills than just understanding games or being able to create mind-blowing plays. It requires you to understand people, be passionate, and be excited to learn and improve your own skills.
The best NFL coaches understand the game tactics, know what each player is capable of, and can combine all the knowledge to create a game-winning plan. These are the qualities of incredible coaches.
The first thing any great coach needs is knowledge. They need to understand the ins and outs of the game, form tactics depending on the opponent, and use their players in the best way possible.
They also need to be able to share their knowledge. Young athletes won’t have the same insight; therefore, it is essential to be a leader and a teacher. Athletes can’t just pick up what you’re telling them with no questions asked; you need to be able to teach them effectively.
Eager to Learn
Great coaches never think they know everything there is to know. No matter how successful you are, there are always ways to improve your own knowledge and skills, as well as those of your players.
Being able to accept that a particular method you use isn’t the best and adjusting suitably is the sign of someone who doesn’t want to settle but wants to continue to grow and improve no matter what.
Understands Each Athlete
While team sports require everyone to play as a unit, a good coach recognizes that each individual has their own strengths and weaknesses, their own insecurities, and their own learning curves.
Looking at each individual and giving them what they need to thrive is almost more important than getting everyone to work as a team. You are only as strong as your weakest link, and good coaches know how to get the best out of everyone.
This one is a no-brainer, but passion is easily one of the most essential skills a good coach needs. Passion for every aspect of the game allows a coach to be involved in every facet of his team or athlete, which allows for a better relationship as well.
The players or athletes they are coaching feed off this passion as well; if your coach isn’t going to be passionate, why should you?
Communication is key in any sort of relationship, whether it be between a parent and their child, partners, or an athlete and their coach. Being able to put into words what you need someone to do and what you want from them can be the difference between success and failure.
You are the beacon your players or athletes look to, they need your insight and direction, and you have to be able to verbalize all of that concisely and with understanding.
Being able to listen is just as important as being able to communicate. If your players or athletes have concerns, problems, or they aren’t feeling good about something, you need to be able to sit and listen to what they have to say.
This becomes a significant factor if individuals, or your team, have a problem with something you are doing. It might be challenging, but hearing them out and fully understanding the problem will lead to a stronger and better team and relationship.
Sets an Example
A coach is the team leader; what he does reflects on everyone else in the organization. Therefore, they need to set high standards for themselves and stick to those standards no matter what.
If they are wrong or make a mistake, they own up to it and take responsibility for what has happened. You don’t just set a good example when things are going well; it is almost more important to set a good example when things go badly.
A great coach will stay positive and supportive in victory and defeat. There is a big difference between being positive when your team or athlete does badly and being ignorant of the result and consequences; coaches know this.
Once again, if you aren’t optimistic, what reason do your players have to be positive? It starts at the top and works its way down.