1.Great coaches promote shared ownership and internal leadership. They create a â€˜teamâ€™ attitude.
2.Great coaches have their players keep a notebook with plays, motivational quotes, and facts about the programâ€™s history.
3.Great coaches are teachers at their most fundamental level. They teach firefighting; they teach life lessons.
4.Great coaches love the business; respect the business.
5.Great coaches work on their craft every day. They work on the Xâ€™s & Oâ€™s, strategy as well as on leadership.
6.Great coaches establish roles on the team. They clearly define these roles to everyone in the program.
7.Great coaches objectively analyze a playerâ€™s strengths & weaknesses and find ways to utilize their strengths and minimize their weaknesses.
8.Great coaches have high character. They know they are in the business of leading by example and developing young men & women for life.
9.Great coaches praise the behavior they want to see repeated and discipline the behavior the want to see eliminated.
10.Great coaches donâ€™t have â€˜favorites.â€™ They care about all of their players and are objective when deciding roles and playing time.
12.Great coaches get everyone on the team to accept their role and fulfill it to the best of their ability.
13.Great coaches are always prepared. They study books, videos, reports, and design training plans accordingly.
14.Great coaches listen to their assistant coaches and to their team members. They donâ€™t feel threatened and they welcome suggestions.
15.Great coaches donâ€™t over coach. They donâ€™t talk to hear themselves talk; they talk to make a point, to teach, and to motivate.
16.Great coaches coach in â€˜bullet pointsâ€™ during training â€“ they keep the action flowing! They keep instructions short and sweet.
17.Great coaches know that firefighting isnâ€™t just about wearing the uniform. Itâ€™s also about effort and execution.
18.Great coaches pay attention to detail. They know that everything regarding their program is important. Everything makes a difference.
19.Great coaches make sure everything done in practice has a purpose. Every drill has value.
20.Great coaches delegate to their assistant coaches and let them share the responsibility (and joy) of running a team.
21.Great coaches compliment their team and assistants often and with sincerity (but only when deserved; not to â€˜blow smokeâ€™).
22.Great coaches are the hardest workers in their program. They set the tone. They donâ€™t let any member/coach outwork them.
23.Great coaches are a spark of energy and enthusiasm. They raise the level of everyone in their program, every day.
24.Great coaches are mentally tough. They donâ€™t get flustered. They know their mental toughness trickles down to the entire program.
25.Great coaches challenge their team and assistantsâ€¦ every day! They donâ€™t allow complacency.
26.Great coaches are the face of their program. They welcome this and represent with pride and class.
27.Great coaches have a clear, precise vision of what they want their team to become and accomplish.
28.Great coaches learn what motivates each player on the team. They find ways to light each playerâ€™s internal fire.
29.Great coaches give trust and respectâ€¦ and by doing so they earn trust and respect from everyone in their program.
30.Great coaches are 100%, absolutely, positively committed to their team in every way possible.
31.Great coaches create standards of excellence and hold their players and staff accountable.
32.Great coaches know that you canâ€™t win at every incidentâ€¦ but you can prepare (and try) to win every game.
33.Great coaches set realistic, attainable goals and get everyone in the program to buy in and achieve them.
34.Great coaches admit when they are wrong or make a mistake. They are humble.
36.Great coaches are confident without being arrogant. They believe in their team and in their preparation; but never assume they will win.
37.Great coaches donâ€™t worry so much about what their opponent is going to do; but instead focuses more on what their team is going to do.
38.Great coaches know â€˜it ainâ€™t about me; itâ€™s about themâ€™ (referring to their team).
39.Great coaches donâ€™t coach for money or fame. They may achieve money and fame; but that is not why they coach.
40.Great coaches constantly make adjustments. They go into every drill and emergency with a plan and then adjust accordingly.
41.Great coaches criticize the execution of the plan; not the person. Itâ€™s never personal.
42.Great coaches will help a teammate they coached decades ago. Every former teammate is a part of their team.
43.Great coaches lead by example and are excellent role models in every situation of the word; on and off the fire ground.
44.Great coaches coach the members on their team the way they would want someone to coach their own son or daughter.
45.Great coaches teach the fundamentals of firefightingâ€¦ even at the highest of levels.
46.Great coaches are active during drills. They donâ€™t stand in one spot with their arms folded. They are fully engaged!
47.Great coaches are authentic to who they are and to their own personality. They donâ€™t try to coach like someone else.
48.Great coaches are lifelong learners and true students of the business. They read, watch, and listen to anything that will help them get better.
49.Great coaches coach what they know and what works for their program. They seek to learn what they donâ€™t know.
50.Great coaches know â€˜it ainâ€™t what I say that mattersâ€¦ itâ€™s what they hear â€™ (referring to their team).
51.Great coaches listen for things they donâ€™t want to hear and look for things they donâ€™t want to see.
52.Great coaches coach their current team to the best of their ability. They arenâ€™t ever looking ahead to next year.
53.Great coaches donâ€™t allow themselves, their staff, or their members to get satisfiedâ€¦ no matter how successful they are.
54.Great coaches call each member by their name, not nicknames.
55.Great coaches know they get what they emphasize. They make sure they emphasize the right things!
About the author:
Jeremy Rebok is the Assistant Fire Chief of Operations and Prevention at the United States Military Academy, NY. Â He has previously held the position of Captain, Assistant Chief, and Deputy Chief in both volunteer and career capacities. Jeremy holds an Associate of Arts Degree in Building Construction Technology from the Pennsylvania College of Technology and currently finishing up Bachelor of Science Degree in Fire Science from Columbia Southern University.