There’s a thread on the Volley Talk forum which gets into the subject of coaching traits – desirable and undesirable. One of the posters presented the following list of the traits possessed by the best coaches.

  1. Very competitive people, who teach and promote competitiveness at all times
  2. Very confident people; their players believe they are going to win
  3. Excellent teacher’s of the game; many have a system they believe in and certain type of athlete to fit that system; fundamentally very strong
  4. Push their players to be better than they themselves think they can be; very demanding
  5. Intensity, toughness, togetherness are a huge part of the “culture” of their team
  6. Expectations are always sky high in every part of the program; athletically, academically and off the court
  7. Care very deeply for the well-being and success of their players
  8. Teach life lessons; players often feel they’ve been a part of something special
  9. May be demanding; but always have their players’ back; trust
  10. Tough-love is always mixed with praise and pride in their players

I think there are a few of these that overlap. For example #4, #9, and #10 all have the demanding/tough element, but seemingly from a good, caring place. And that also links in with #7.

I think #1 could be challenged. After all, what is competitiveness? What does is really mean to be a competitor?

There is a balancing act on the subject of confidence from #2. And I think if you talk to professional coaches you’d probably get a bit of push-back on #8. Of course #6 also brings in an element that is only relevant to those working with athletes who are also students.

What about yourself? Anything you would add to this list? Or in contrast, anything you would remove?

6 Steps to Better Practices - Free Guide

Subscribe to my weekly newsletter today and get this free guide to making your practices the best, along with loads more coaching tips and information.

No spam ever. Unsubscribe at any time. Powered by ConvertKit

John Forman
John Forman

John is currently the Talent Strategy Manager (oversees the national teams) and Indoor Performance Director for Volleyball England, as well as Global Director for Volleyball for Nation Academy. His volleyball coaching experience includes all three NCAA divisions, plus Junior College, in the US; university and club teams in the UK; professional coaching in Sweden; and both coaching and club management at the Juniors level. He's also been a visiting coach at national team, professional club, and juniors programs in several countries. Learn more on his bio page.

Please share your own ideas and opinions.