Being a high school teacher or coach carries one of the biggest responsibilities to the future of society. We are in positions to develop and mold the minds of future husbands, wives, teachers, politicians and everything in-between. With that being said, it is imperative that a high school strength coach looks beyond just making their athletes better in their respective sports. The weight rooms and fields can teach some of the greatest life lessons these kids will ever learn. How to show up on time, how to be accountable, how to be organized, how to work hard, etc. The weight room develops the strength necessary to become a competitor in life. Our job requires more than just developing a program for a kid and walking away. Below are 3 tips that will help develop a positive culture for you and your athletes.
- Be Organized! – Nothing is worse than walking into a weight room and seeing kids wandering around not knowing what to do or where to go. You might write the greatest program known to man but if the kids have no idea what they are doing, it will fall flat on its face. Make sure you design the program with a good flow and create some sort of tracking system for the athletes to log their workouts and use as a map. Get off your ass and stop texting.
- Make it Fun – No matter how skilled your athletes are, they are still kids. Being a tough guy may work for a little bit but they will eventually tune you out. Blast music THEY like. Pump guys up as they lift. Joke with them. Show them how to have a good time while working hard. Most of us are probably field coaches as well; they’ll respect you so much more if they know you aren’t a robot.
- Be consistent – One of the top killers of any program or organization is a lack of consistency. Treating your best player differently than your lesser players. Allowing kids to show up late on one day then yelling at them the next day. People crave consistency; it is much easier to give 100% if you know exactly what is expected. You are only as strong as your weakest link. When your weakest links see no difference between themselves and the strongest links other than skill, he or she will be more motivated to work and play hard for you.
Hopefully you can find ways to implement these ideas into your program. These are just the tip of the iceberg for developing team culture and the best part about them is they are all free of charge. You just have to be willing to audit yourself and your program.