I train on a track at a middle school. Their soccer team is usually having practice.
In the photo the guy in grey tshirt is the coach. During my warmup and workout I listen to him coach his athletes and I listen to the athletes talking to each other.
Coaches across all sports from toddlers to high schoolers and the parents of their athletes should be forced to sit in a room, blindfolded, and listen to 30 – 90 minutes of video tape of this guy’s practice session from any given day of the week.
He’s done the most important part of coaching which is to create an organizational culture similar in concept to a corporate culture at a large business.
He feeds that culture by being extremely informational, teaching the athletes sport related knowledge they want to know. Injects individual attention and praise while working with the group as a whole. All of which drives the athletes to embrace the culture….also known as behavioral guardrails and expectations.
The culture directs behavior. In turn, the athletes pursue a reasonable level of self-discipline. That self-discipline further contributes to the organizational culture. And it creates the reality of the athletes themselves, via peer pressure, policing and enforcing a reasonable level of disciplinary activity among themselves….something you can hear for yourself during their practice sessions.
What you won’t hear is a raised voice from the coach or dis-unity among the athletes.
Its a middle school, not an NFL or NBA team, yet this dude gets it!
Across a couple decades when I trained downtown at Austin high school, each Fall I listened to the band director. He gets it too!
Organizational culture is priceless.
Unless of course the coach has failed in this area.
The sound of failure is screaming, yelling, barking orders, zero trust in the athletes to the extent that the coach has to oversee every stretch, every drill, every workout because the athletes have no self-discipline. That’s the culture.
Research journals in this area that I’ve followed since 1991……
Journal Of Organizational Behavior
Journal Of Sport Behavior
Journal Of Sport & Social Issues
The Sport Psychologist
Journal Of Applied Sport Psychology
Journal Of Sport and Exercise Psychology
Psychology Of Sport & Exercise