How to motivate and stimulate your players for more successJul 13, 2022
As an Esports coach, a crucial part of your job is motivating and stimulating your players to do what they need to do to grow. You want them to engage in the right behaviors. Reaching their next level depends upon it, and therefore, so does your success as a coach.
To succeed as a coach, you want to learn how to motivate and stimulate your players the right way.
Why? Because a motivated and stimulated team is a team that always puts in their best effort, is consistently developing, and gets the output they are capable of.
In this blog, you'll learn how to do that by understanding motivation and stimulation, the wrong way to motivate and stimulate your players, and how you can do it the right way to ensure their growth.
Players are like plants.
Helping your players to grow is a process that takes time, attention, care, and patience, just like growing a plant. A plant starts from a seed, and as you water it over time, it grows to bear fruit.
Your players are precisely the same. You need to water them if you want them to grow. They need to be watered correctly and effectively. Watering them too little, too much, or not at all damages their growth and your results as a coach.
What are motivation and stimulation?
Let's begin by briefly defining what motivation and stimulation are.
Stimulation is 'watering' or 'encouraging' your players to do an action that you know will help and benefit them. Stimulation comes from an external source, such as you, their coach. Stimulation is not forcing or demanding. It's nurturing and convincing.
Motivation is a feeling. It's an internal incentive inside your players, driving them to act on their own accord. It's a willingness to do an action or specific behavior. Motivation is created when your players build their own incentive or when you provide an incentive for them.
Using these two definitions, let's explore how you can motivate and stimulate your players to reach their next level. We'll start with a scenario you're probably all familiar with and explain how you should and shouldn't motivate and stimulate your players.
The right way and the wrong way to do it
Let's imagine that one week ago, you facilitated a team session to Formulate Strategic and Operational Principles. A result of this session was that the team agreed to always show up 20 minutes early to practice, and last night, one of your players was late (for no good reason).
The right way to motivate and stimulate your players is to focus on the four players that showed up on time. How? By complimenting them on being on time and honoring the team agreement made one week ago. This way, you're watering the behaviors that you want to grow.
The wrong (and all too common) way of approaching this situation is to focus on the one person that showed up late and ignore the other four players that were on time. This is watering the behaviors you don't want to grow rather than those you want to grow.
It's highly beneficial to mainly focus on what you want to grow to motivate and stimulate your players the right way. Sounds super simple right? That's because it is. Your players (and people in general) mostly grow from compliments and positive feedback on what they're doing right.
Here are ways that you can motivate and stimulate your players the right way:
- Name three positive things about your team or players after practice. Link these positive things to their feelings rather than objective observations. For example, "I liked how Johnny took the lead to make that play. It worked out well", or "I liked our comms in rounds 6 and 7". These compliments help build the safe team environment we all strive for.
- Let the team or individual player mention what went well. Help them to link it to what was done objectively. For example, "Our laning phase was strong because we stayed calm under pressure".
- Reward effort. As a rule of thumb, you want to reward your players for the effort that they put in rather than the results. A great benefit of doing this is that it builds confidence. For example, "You've consistently put in hard work to develop your aim this week".
- Reward sparingly. Reward your players often, but don't overdo it. As a standard, compliment them when it is genuine.
A quick question for you before we move on – what kind of feedback do you mostly give as a coach? Do you constantly criticize or focus on the mistakes? Or do you mostly compliment them and give positive feedback?
How doing it the right way benefits your players
- Higher motivation for practice, solo or with the team. When you help your players FEEL like they've done an excellent job, they're going to be more motivated to show up to practice, and they're going to put more effort in during practice, scrims, and official matches.
- The continuous growth of their confidence. When you motivate and stimulate your players in the right way, they understand that they're taking the right action to improve. When they know they're doing this, their confidence grows.
- Better cooperation. You know that your players learn and grow best in a positive atmosphere. A positive environment fosters better cooperation. When you motivate and stimulate them, you're giving them the fuel to create a positive atmosphere.
- Able to follow up on tasks. When your players feel good, they will want to complete the tasks that you give them and follow up on them.
- A more friendly and social environment. How can you expect your players to grow if there's an unfriendly and anti-social environment within your team?
Wrapping it up
Now you know what motivation and stimulation are, why it's essential for your player's growth and your success as a coach, the right and wrong way to motivate and stimulate your players, and the benefits it has on your team.
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See you there, coach!
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