BATTING COACHES Need to Coach Business Leaders
Your "Players" CRAVE CONFIDENCE
I’m a motivational speaker, but I’m also a baseball fan. This means I read a bunch about baseball. (Oddly, unless you’re the Colorado Rockies, I don’t read much about the individual teams. But I love general articles about baseball.)
I recently read an article in the New York Times about batting coach. Kevin Long. By all accounts, this guy is a heavy hitter. (Excuse the pun. Come to think of it, I love that pun; you’re welcome!)
Coach Long has worked for several teams, all of whom did well. This past year, the Philadelphia Phillies hired him to coach and ended up in the World Series. They credit Coach Long for part of their success.
What fascinated me is that Coach Long is well known for two things. First of all he’s a good coach for the physical and athletic requirements for good hitting. He’s able to teach good hitters how to be better hitters. He knows strategies and techniques.
But what interested me the most was that Coach Long is equally known for providing social and emotional support to his players in a way that helps them play at a championship level.
To completely oversimplify the article, he’s able to encourage the players in a meaningful way. By the end of a session with him, the players feel like good batters. Kevin Long encourages them. He makes them feel safe. He makes them feel talented. And because he helps raise their personal self-confidence, they end up hitting better.
In other words, coach, Kevin Long understands that natural physical abilities combined with knowledge about the techniques and strategies of batting, are crucial, but insufficient. The missing piece is the mental piece. By offering, meaningful, praise, encouragement, and sincere, authentic compliments he’s able to get these players hitting better.
Here’s The Thing
I suspect that many leaders in business would not be at all surprised at the statement that good coaches are also good encouragers. If they treat their players like robots, the players will underperform. Conversely, if they focus on the people and heart side of their players, they help them reach their potential. I’m picturing some C suite exec, reading this paragraph and saying, “Yep! Coaches have to be encouragers too!”
So why do so many managers and business leaders ignore the power of encouragement, praise, and emotional and social support? This is the low hanging fruit of the business world when we’re talking about amping up bottom line growth.
I have talked to several business leaders who flat out told me they don’t believe in social and emotional support. It usually goes something like this: “I don’t care if they are happy. I don’t care if they feel needed or important. I care if they get their work done at a high-level. That’s been my personal philosophy. I come in and put my hard work in and put my head down and get it done. I expect that from my reports.”
Yet this same guy (they are almost always guys) would strongly agree that athletic coaches are required to help their players through the mental part of the game. If it’s important in sports, why is it so frequently ignored in business?
Hey Leaders! I’m Talking to You!
If you’re a leader, at any level, you need to take a hint from Coach Kevin Long from the Phillies. Know that your people require more than training and competency building knowledge. They crave knowing that they belong. They crave knowing that they are good enough to be helpful. They crave knowing they are part of something bigger than themselves, and that they are an important portion of your team. They crave knowing that you care.
So what should you do about it?
Satisfy those cravings. Be generous with praise and admiration. Keep on with the compliments. If you have rock stars working for you make sure they know they are rock stars. And make sure they know you appreciate them. Easy, huh?
A quicker side: don’t fake it. Make your compliments authentic. Praise genuinely positive behavior.
Faking social, and emotional support almost never works. But there is plenty out there to praise. Find something and get started.
Would You Like Some Help?
Call me. I am a funny, motivational speaker who specializes in teaching people, and organizations how to better harness the power of social and emotional support. I teach them the science behind this super powerful and under used skill. But more importantly, I motivate them to want to use it more. I make them care. The science is clear — when we focus on the people or heart side of leadership, everybody wins. Every single business metric goes up. (You can read that sentence again… It’s a doozy.)
Call me and let’s talk about creating an interactive and funny business keynote for your team that will help them all bat better!
Bio of a Motivational Speaker
Funny Motivational Keynote Speaker Brad Montgomery is an award-winning speaker. He speaks to audiences across the globe (and across the USA), and is based in Denver, Colorado.
Although he speaks to audiences in nearly every industry, he is known as a funny health care speaker, a education speaker for teachers, a real estate speaker, and a sales speaker. He got his start as a magician & comedian, but now is known almost exclusively as keynote speaker.
He speaks both at live, in-person events, as well as online and virtually as a zoom speaker. No matter what you’re trying to accomplish with your audience, if you’re ready to invest in your people, give us a call now.