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  • Writer's pictureRyan Jones

Leaders, do you know when to be present?

We must recognize when individuals are training and developing, and we must make time to be present for them as leaders, parents, or coaches.

"It's not what I know, it's what they do on the court that really matters," Mike Krzyzewski (Coach K) said in his book "Leading with the Heart," which I read many years ago. This quote was used at the beginning of the "Training and Development" chapter.

This is absolutely correct. As a coach, the most rewarding part of my job is seeing clients improve after they have practiced. I recommend reading my blogs on practicing if you haven't already, but I digress. Being present for your team during practice is extremely beneficial and leads to their individual success and ultimately to your team’s success.

Coach K continues, "A leader has to work through the process with them so that he knows they will perform their jobs well during a game. You can’t just tell people what to do and then expect them to perform well." Coach K, as far as I can tell, is not talking about micromanaging, but rather being there during the development process. Being present may entail more coaching time, sitting side by side when they are learning something new, or spot checking along the way.

Here are some indicators that you, as a leader, should be aware of when your presence is required:

  • Oversimplified queries about a work or assignment could indicate that they are confused or don't comprehend the task.

  • Procrastination or a sluggish start to an assignment: this indicator can be easily mistaken for someone who is simply a natural procrastinator, but most often there is a worry of not knowing where or how to begin.

  • They ask a lot of why questions, which could suggest that they don't comprehend the task at hand rather than disputing your authority or judgment.

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