Capitalist Note: Please make it stop. This slow season on the sports front is killing me. Can football go ahead and get here so we have some meaningful programming? No, baseball doesn't count - sorry - at either the pro level or the Little League World Series level. BTW, while I'm ranting, when did Little League games at the sub-regional level become ESPN fare? Do I really care about Lansing, MI vs Kalamazoo, MI in the sub-regional qualifier? Why is that on ESPN? Shouldn't kids be in school?
Related - get off my lawn. Below is a post on coaching skills in NFL training camps and the connection to your talent - to get you through this trying time on television.
Some of you are NFL fans. Remember "Bountygate" in New Orleans, where the team was paying bounties for vicious hits and knocking opposing players out of games? Read up here if you need a refresh - the whole scandal caused coach Sean Payton and his defensive coordinator to be suspended for an entire season.
That defensive coordinator? It's a guy named Gregg Williams, and last year he was Defensive Coordinator of the Los Angeles Rams, the team featured on the HBO series "Hard Knocks", which basically puts 100 cameras in training camps and then crafts a show around it. It's a great series, check it out if you haven't. (note - Williams is in Cleveland this year and Hard Knocks is in Tampa, where I just saw them cut a kicker they wasted a draft pick on two years ago.)
Back to Gregg Williams - as you might expect, a guy who's been suspended for a season for being inside a bounty system (something that was common in the NFL in the past and not limited to the Saints, btw) is a little salty when talking to his players.
Here's a great highlight from episode 3 of Hard Knocks in 2016. The scene is a film breakdown of the first pre-season game and head coach Jeff Fisher has warned the team to prepare for real talk when they break up into their various units for the film breakdown.
Enter Gregg Williams, who begins his film breakdown with the following gem to the team:
"Now, you’re saying, ‘There it is, Gregg’s being a dick again.’ No, I’m f**king trying to figure out how I can f**king help you make this team,”
Translation - if you listen to what I say and make adjustments, you'll have a better chance of not being cut. If you choose to focus on the fact your performance is being criticized and don't hear what I'm telling you, you're missing an opportunity.
I loved this clip because while harsh, it underscores what everyone who manages people has to accomplish before coaching for improvement can begin - asking for the focus of your coaching to assume you have positive intent in coaching them. You're not trying to be an ass, you're trying to help them.
Can you accomplish that in a softer way than Williams? Yes.
Will a lot of you go too soft and invite the recipient of your coaching to view the feedback as optional? Also yes - which is not good.
Conveying a sense of urgency when coaching is art, not science. There are a lot of ways to get it done. You may hate the way that Gregg Williams does it.
Just don't assume, because you're more professional, that your coaching is more effective.