Penny Lucas-White | Alabama State University, Head Coach
We are all part of a team in some capacity. The roles we play may be different, but the mindset should always be the same – a growth mindset.
Growth mindset is key to setting a culture that motivates players to be the best version of themselves while adding value to the team. I want to challenge each person reading this blog to make a commitment to intentional growth.
One thing I’ve noticed over the years is that successful coaches and successful players are continuous learners. Coaching Millennials and Generation Z, I’ve found that it’s very important to have a plan in place with specific goals. I share that plan with the team, then revisit it when needed. This allows for a faster buy-in.
Developing the potential of your players also requires you to truly invest in them as people. This should be a top priority. Adding value to them as growing individuals and appreciating their contribution to the team will reap great dividends for all involved.
Fostering an intentional growth mindset creates a culture where the emphasis is on the process, not the outcome. Intentionality is all about the importance of having a specific purpose (with a team, it’s a collective purpose) and then taking meaningful steps to fulfill it. This creates a positive culture of learning for student-athletes as well as coaches.
A saying I like to emphasize with my team is: “We are a sum of our experiences.” This allows me to challenge all of my student-athletes to put great effort toward intentionally growing every day. In my experience, this not only changes how they train in practice – for instance, they strive to make EVERY touch intentional – but how they approach all aspects of their lives, including:
The Law of Intentionality motivates each individual to be present in the growth process. Download and take a look at the Accidental vs. Intentional Growth Chart provided and notice the difference between growing by intention and growing by accident. This could change your approach to life in all aspects.
Finally, remember this: Be present today and live on intention! It makes a difference!
Penny Lucas-White, a former member of the USA National Team, has won 6 Southwestern Athletic Conference championships in 7 seasons since taking over as the head coach at Alabama State University in 2011.