Motivating the Team: Inspiring Others to Strive for the Win

March 12, 2018Diana Lengerson

Being a group leader or sports coach is a tough job. Leading a group of people takes some smarts about the human mind and its reactions in social situations. You might have a team that’s poised to win a huge championship this season. However, there are always challenges facing each team member. Consider these tips for motivating your team. Striving for the win is both a mental and physical battle.

Using Positive Reinforcement

Striving to be number one doesn’t mean that coaches yell at their team. People respond well to positive reinforcement instead of negative commentary. Reward people with praise or a treat as they complete a task as instructed. For team members who aren’t performing as well as they should at this point, correct them with clear instructions and move forward. When they do perform the right task, positive reinforcement should take over.

Taking the Group out of the Norm

Your surroundings play a role when you’re inspiring a team. If you coach a swim team, the pool is your only environment. Consider a trip to a different pool. There might be collaborations with other coaches so that improvements can be made, such as with swim position in the water. Taking the group to another environment, even a different pool, can mentally wake them up. A win might be on the horizon with the fresh coaching too.

Building Bonds

Use anytime as a team to build bonds between the members. A group that’s bonded together can actually work better during challenging times. They anticipate moves and work at a better mental level than without the bonding. Always encourage good sportsmanship and friendship as the basis for any strong team through the season.

Moving Forward

There may be a few losses on the way to a big win. Don’t dwell on these losses. Discuss the steps that lead the group to their defeat afterwards. They’ll understand what happened so that future losses don’t occur in the same manner. The next practice should be treated as a fresh start. Move forward, and the next challenge will be easy to conquer.

Team members will move in and out of your orbit at times, especially between seasons. Always be receptive when it comes to welcoming new people and helping others move on. The team spirit lives on in these individuals as they carry on through life.

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