Bridging Leadership Lessons from the Workplace and Those Experiences Shaping Today's Youth and Tomorrow's Leaders
Recently, my son’s high school basketball team suffered a crushing defeat to a conference foe. Even though we understood that this team was a better team on paper, you still hold out hope that your team will compete and make a good showing. It started out bad and only got worse. From the experiences of my older sons, I prepared my youngest son for the physical defense that was going to be played on him. I informed him that he would not get any calls and that they would be grabbing and holding him. I told him it would be physical, and he is going to have to play through it and control his frustration. Well, it was exactly what we expected, and I found myself commenting as such as I live streamed the game.
After the game, I decided to rewatch the film to see if it was as bad as I thought. To see why their guard would get calls while my son did not seem to get the same calls. Well, I would like to apologize for most of my complaints. Our fouls were definitely fouls and I could see why their fouls were not called. Our kids were reaching with their hands, instead of being physical with their chest. It became clear that their defensive position was better than ours and became understandable why the referees didn’t blow their whistle. Being open to the possibility that I could be wrong, allowed me to view the game from a different perspective. To acknowledge the Mental Models that existed and caused bias in how I viewed the situation.
After this game, we were able to identify ways to address the physical style of play. To fight away the hands to keep them from getting to his body. We looked at both ways to create space for separation but to also invade their space to initiate contact to either force a foul to be called or to ensure a higher probability of getting a good shot.
When reviewing film, it can be easier to start with the mistakes or failure points of a game. The assumption is that something went wrong or is broken and needs to be fixed. Instead of jumping to a solution, you first need to seek understanding so that the correct process can be put in place to address the situation.
It’s possible when you review a turnover that appeared to be a bad pass turned out to be the failure of a teammate to cut hard and get to the spot they were supposed to be at according to their offense. In football, wide receivers have timing patterns that are based upon how many steps the quarterbacks take in their drop and then release. The failure of the WR to make it to the spot cleanly or runs the wrong route can result in what looks to be an awfully thrown ball. But when you dig deeper, it may be that the defender did a great job to slow the receiver at the line of scrimmage. Or maybe another receiver did not run the correct route and so did not occupy a defender allowing them to provide coverage.
It shows that what is obvious at first glance, may be something different entirely once you get the opportunity to investigate. Instead of blaming the quarterback or wide receiver, you focus on the blocking scheme or reinforcing the routes of the other receivers necessary to get the teammate open. The reaction at the moment, may be in stark contrast to the action that is needed later to improve.
When you watch film of the steals you can see what worked either as a defensive scheme or anticipation by an individual. But do you watch film to identify the moments that you were unable to get the steal? Were you out of position? Was your stance too high? Was your teammate too close to their person instead of being in a position to help? Sharing this information with your team can help the individual improve but also the teammates and as a coach, your approach to planning and recognizing opportunities to slow down the opposing team
Instead of watching film to see the shots you made, see if there is a pattern to the shots you missed. Are you going a certain direction? Is it when you catch and shoot versus off the dribble? Was your shot rushed or did you have time to set your feet?
Instead of seeing the rebounds you gathered in, what about the rebounds you didn’t get? Watching film quickly reveals the difference between getting rebounds and going to get rebounds.
Do the assists come from the offensive system and the plays or are they coming from the player and their ability to see the pass and then make the pass? Ball movement is a vital aspect of the game and film can quickly show whether players can quickly move the ball or need to think first and cause the ball to stick, slowing the offense.
As a young athlete, it’s important to grow your game. As parents, we can help them grow, but we can’t grow for them. Reviewing film and assessing their game MUST be what they want to do because they are seeking growth. Because they are setting goals for themselves. We can’t live our lives through them but we can be there to guide them and help them understand the power of growth. Reinforcing the value of growth is what will help them reach their potential, Beyond Today.
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Tom Brown - a husband and a father who is simply trying to make a difference. Using my experience as a Manufacturing Executive to connect leadership from the boardroom to the hardwood to help teams grow and develop to make a difference in the lives of others.
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