Love your Team”If you want to go fast, go alone. If you want to go far, you need a team.” ~John Wooden
I’ve been blessed to be on many different teams as I worked my way up the athletic ladder, from high school teams, to Olympic teams, and on to my own professional MMA team. I have also been a coach on many different teams at all levels high school, college, Olympic level, and professional MMA including the UFC. One thing I have noticed without fail is that those who dislike their teammates and coaching staff never reach the highest levels of success.
You absolutely have to love what you do to be successful and not just the competition, but you have to love the monotonous hours of hard training in and out of the gym. You also have to love your team and being a part of your team. If you don’t care about your team, then you WILL NOT be inclined to help your team grow, or be inclined to give them constructive feedback, or be inclined to give them the push they need. The simple fact is that the team’s success is your success, as the old baseball saying goes “no manager hit a home run”.If you love and care about your team you will be inclined to do right by them, and in turn you will do right for yourself and your career. If you genuinely care about your team, it will show through your actions and character and your team will care about you – and the rest of the team members.
So if you don’t love and care about your team mates, then find a way to care about them, or by all means, find a new team! Your team’s success depends on it and so does your success.
Look for what your team mates and coaching staff do well? What do they do right? What are their strengths? What character qualities do you admire? Use these positive traits as a starting point to love your team.
List concretely what you don’t like. Then decide how you can you make it better? Do not look for ways to divide, rather look for positive ways to unite. Be a positive influence and figure out how the team could do things better and bring that to the leaders.
We have all been a part of a family or currently are part of a family. Love your team like your family. Yes they drive you nuts at times, but they are there for you when you need them and vise versa. In a family you don’t just expect to be served by the other members and then get to criticize when things go wrong and you don’t get your way. It’s a give and take relationship, not a one way street. You are not at the coffee shop where they make it just the way you like or you get a new coffee.
Bad coaches ignore their problems, great coaches do something about it.