Interpersonal skills to motivate your athletes

Some coaches rely on interpersonal skills to successfully motivate athletes. These 10 are keys to being successful in life, but coaches also believe these items can  help you motivate your players each day during practices or matches.

Huddle21. Acceptance and appreciation. Accept your players for who they are and show them that you appreciate them for being the person that they are.

2. Build trust. Let your players know that you believe in them and trust their judgment.

3. Lead from the heart. While showing that you care about them as human beings, teach your players what is true, right and honorable. Don’t be phony!

4. Offer honest two-way communication. Be confident enough in your coaching abilities to get input from your players. Listen to their suggestions, but make sure they understand that you make the final decision.

5. Strive for perfection. While every coach has room to improve, commit to giving your best every day. Just because someone is the star of the team is no reason to let his or her performance slide in practices or games.

6. The power of “Yes.” While it’s your coaching system, it still takes salesmanship to convince players that the system is best for everyone on the team.

7. Make emotional deposits. If you always take withdrawals and never make deposits, there will be a time when you go to the bank and there is no money left. Instead, make deposits in your players so that when you need to have a tough conversation, you can do so without damaging the player and coach relationship.

8. The prize is bigger than the price. Since sacrifice is the key to success, your elite athlete may have to sacrifice some personal glory for the betterment of the team. Help your best players buy into this concept while promoting the idea to all team members.

9. Take the time. Since every athlete is motivated differently, determine what motivational techniques work best for each player.

10. Don’t compromise. No matter what, do not compromise your personal integrity to win, to get players to like you or to get an elite player to play more effectively.