If you’re looking for dramatic improvement in any endeavor, you can’t escape the two drivers of profound, positive change: coaching and practice. Of the two, practice seems to be self-explanatory. Better takes practice. No one can argue that.
But why does coaching matter just as much? Couldn’t a properly motivated individual with sufficient time and resources self-prep to wild success? Perhaps, but the common route to uncommon achievement always involves one or more exceptional coaches. Just ask your favorite performer or athlete–assuming you can get access! Even Bill Gates, one of the most successful (if you use wealth as a measure of success) self-made businessmen of all time believes in the necessity of coaching: “Everyone needs a coach. It doesn’t matter whether you’re a basketball player, a tennis player, a gymnast or a bridge player.”
Coaching matters because true greatness does not occur by accident. We who seek to achieve the most challenging goals must change in response to those challenges, and true coaching is not just educational but transformational. How can superior coaching help you?
Each person holds so much power within themselves that needs to be let out. Sometimes they just need a little nudge, a little direction, a little support, a little coaching, and the greatest things can happen. — Pete Carroll
A good coach will make his players see what they can be rather than what they are. — Ara Parasheghian
All coaching is, is taking a player where he can’t take himself. –Bill McCartney
Coaching isn’t therapy. It’s product development, with you as the product. — Fast Company
People don’t only use a coach when there is a problem with their technique; they understand that no matter how good their technique is, there is always room for improvement. — John Perry
Coaches and the people they coach know that for the future to be different, we need to change the way we do things in the present…. More often, changes involve shifts in attitudes, thinking, perceptions, and behavior. — Gary Collins
If you’re looking for minor tweaks or improvements, go ahead and tackle the problem on your own. If, on the other hand, you seek a dramatic change in performance or wish to prevail against the most daunting odds, you will need–and want–a coach. Be sure to seek out the best coaching possible. As John Wooden–no slouch in the coaching department himself–said, “A good coach can change a game. A great coach can change a life.”