By: John Klessinger
Originally Published in: A Coach's Manual
BEING LIKED V. BEING RESPECTED
"I firmly believe that respect is a lot more important and a lot
It is human nature to want to be liked. It is easy to get caught up in wanting to be loved by your players. It is no different as a teacher, boss, or someone in a leadership position. We all want to be liked and respected. Often, we confuse the two and believe they are the same. In a leadership position, being respected is paramount. If you are respected, your people will be more productive, accountable, and willing to go the extra mile. Paradoxically, your people will like you more if you give them what they need to be successful compared to what they want. Pushing them, challenging them, and holding them accountable is what they need to be successful. When you do that, you show them that you care about them and have their best interests in mind.
How do you earn respect with your team?
Being Liked v. Being Respected in Action
I know that some of my athletes do not like me. For that matter, I know some parents do not like me. I am ok with it. I do not demand respect from my players and parents. I know I will earn it by being consistent in my leadership. At the end of the day, you will not make everyone happy. You will be criticized and judged for doing what you think is right. People will talk negatively about you. They will make disparaging comments about you on social media. Unfortunately, it is the way our world is right now.
On the flip side, if you stick to your "guns," most of your players and parents will respect you for what you did with their child. You will get more praise than criticism. You will get more "thank you's" than "F- you's." My advice to any coach is to stay the course while showing humility, kindness, and love. Nothing is more significant than building trust with your players and parents than showing them you care about them. You show you care about them by holding them accountable for what you say and do. By doing this, you will earn respect.
What can you do today?