This tweet from Gary Kleiban got me thinking about winning…
While most people in the thread after that focus on the importance of winning and how to balance player development with that, I was more interested in this part (emphasis added):
…if one wants to develop competitors (in game and in life).
Is a winning drive developed or innate?
I think it’s mostly innate.
Coaches build teams with a competitive drive primarily by selecting players that already have that drive already and then using that to their advantage.
This is the same in education with efforts to measure and reward teacher quality. Teachers that do best on these measures tend to fall into two categories:
- Those who game the system to get the students best-suited to help the teacher achieve the quality measure in their classrooms.
- Those who happen to get a classroom full of the best suited set of kids for the quality measure randomly.
Like #1, winning coaches become good at recruiting players with a competitive drive and desire to win. These players also tend to put in the most effort off the field to get better.
Not to say that good coaches won’t help these kids get even better. But, probably not as much of it has to do with the coach as we all think.
A-students tend to be A-students no matter who their teachers are. Same goes with B, C, D and F students.
I encourage coaches who think they can develop the winning mindset to take over their club’s lower level teams.
I generally see coaches who try to keep their reputation up, keep a safe distance from these teams. Or, if they do need to take over those teams they will bring seed the team with a few of their higher level players to help the results.
That being said, I think coaches can help players learn how to process wins and losses, while having winning as the objective.
More to come on that.