“There’s a difference between being a leader and being in charge.” – line from video below
Today I want to get right to the point about something. Sorry I don’t have any great stories to help you digest this information.
You can’t be a leader if you don’t know something that others don’t know, do some things that the others don’t do or have been somewhere where others haven’t been. There are some student-athletes who really want to be the official leader because it would look good on their resume not because they have something they want to impart to the team.
These types of athletes don’t work harder, communicate better, or want to understand the direction of the program. What they really want is some feeling of control. Those athletes are easy to spot although they would believe they are incognito.
If you want to be noticed as a leader:
Don’t talk about it or ask for it
Coaches look for leaders, they don’t interview to find them. As an athlete, have some kind of work ethic…or come back in season with a new love for the sport and your own insights. Have a teaching mentality and be patient with your teammates. Coaches look at your behavior with the rest of the team and sees who needs to be the person guiding. You don’t automatically get it because you are an upperclassman.
Leadership really is a way of being…an attitude…your character. I hope you notice that those three can’t be hidden. It’s not a position for which you strive, it’s a lifestyle that you buy-into!
Do you really want to care about all the other players on your team?
Do you have the mind to help guide other personalities into the true culture of your program? Do you have the resilience for that?
Do you have the natural inclination to work hard on whatever coach tells you to do?
Do you refuse to cut corners and work hard even when coach is not around? especially in the weight room?
Do you think that getting to know how, why and what coach wants to accomplish on the floor is an important understanding to develop?
How honestly you answer these will tell you if you are leader or not. And if you are doing these, you probably are the leader already!