Leading for Change
By Wes Simmons

I can still hear his words like it was yesterday. On an ever-so-regular basis, my college coach Mel Tjeerdsma would stand before our team and challenge us with these thoughts:

“Don’t buy the lie that you are staying the same. You are either going this way (with a finger pointed to the sky), or this way (with a finger pointed toward the ground).”

The message was loud and clear. We are either getting better, or we are getting worse. If we aren’t pushing ourselves to grow, we will succumb to the natural consequences of atrophy.

Complacency. Satisfaction. To most coaches, these 4-syllable words might as well be 4-letter words! That’s because coaches are leaders, and leaders very quickly become frustrated with an attitude of contentment. Very few things have the capacity to stunt our growth like an attitude of contentment does.

When complacency begins to take us in the wrong direction, how do we as leaders change the trajectory? We must create discontent. Where there is no discontent, there is no change. But remember, discontent by itself is not enough to produce the change we want. We also must have a clear and compelling vision for the future and practical next steps that begin moving us toward that future.

In our 3D Coaching Course for Certification and/or Course for Credit, we have devoted the following unit in Module 21 towards helping coaches understand the “Formula for Change” so they can effectively lead for change in their programs.


Remember, all growth requires change and all change requires a growth mindset. Change is uncomfortable. Therefore, all meaningful change is a process. But, also remember this… all meaningful change is worth it!

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