My sons and I are partisan supporters of the Sydney Kings NBL basketball team who, despite being a group of immensely talented and committed players, have endured a tough season and are currently bottom of the Australian league.
Recently our performances have improved significantly due to the signing of Jerome Randle and more recently the return from long term injury of our team captain, Kevin Lisch.
Lisch is our glue guy. He’s a top class player in his own right but more importantly to us he brings everyone – the coaching staff, the other players, the fans – everyone, together and holds them together. He is the glue that we have been missing on the court for the months he has been injured.
To succeed every team needs talent, motivation and the mental toughness to keep going. They need self-belief, teamwork and dressing room harmony. However, most of all they need the glue to bring all those qualities and attributes together.
The reasons that Lisch and every glue guy or girl are so important are:
They care about other people
Lisch is a natural leader. He is able to focus on his own game and perform effectively under pressure but also has more than enough headspace to be able to emotionally connect with his teammates. It is not that the Coach or the other players are anti-social or not team players, it’s just that they are too focused on their own tasks to be able to outwardly care and connect with the feelings or emotions of their team mates. Lisch does care and it shows and everyone responds by drawing closer to the positivity that he radiates.
They reinforce the values and identity of the team
Lisch, like every glue guy or girl, represents and reinforces the team values and identity. He wants to win and will do anything and everything for the team. Against a backdrop of pressure, setbacks, failure, disappointment; he is the constant positive flame that burns brightly and keeps his teammates on the same page with the same message.
They build confidence within the team
Lisch radiates positivity and passion, he inspires and encourages his teammates to perform even harder. Even when injured he was on the bench in the team colours ready to support his team mates, ready to jump up and offer encouragement and advice at time-outs and breaks. This social support builds confidence and self-belief and keeps the team from falling apart when times get tough.
Who is the glue guy or girl in your team ? Nurture them, treasure them and retain them. Like Kevin Lisch it is very noticeable when they are gone or injured.
For more on building mental toughness contact us.