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Since the announcement that legendary manager Arsene Wenger is to leave Arsenal at the end of the season there has been an overwhelming outpouring of appreciation, in particular from his players and fellow manager/coaches, for the work he has done and the impact he has made on both the game and people's lives.
Whatever sport or level you coach at when you decide to call time on your coaching career how would you like to be remembered?
As always look forward to reading your replies
(FYI: I'm an Arsenal fan and I love the man so if you feel inclined to comment on his specific situation in a negative fashion I may decide to use my administrative privileges and delete your post! )
I had a go at this exercise for an online course, recently - we were asked to “design our own legacy” (considering our impact on a range of “stakeholders”, and what they might say when we,no longer work with them), with the intention trying to identify important values or principles that would need to be demonstrated if this ideal legacy is ever to become a reality.
I am a “participation” coach - I do some work with with aspiring performance athletes, but I know I will always be passing the onwards and upwards at some point.
I considered three stakeholder groups:
the people you lead/coach/teach
”We don’t need you any more...because you have helped us to learn for ourselves”
your peers, people at the same level as yourself
“Who is going to ask the stupid/dirty/difficult questions, now?”
“Always played by the rules, always put the players (of both teams) first”
From which I derived the key values: Learning; Honesty; Serve others
[this was an exercise in the online course ‘Self-aware Coach’ from Deakin University, hosted by FutureLearn: https://www.futurelearn.com/courses/self-aware-coach. I strongly recommend this, and the other Deakin short courses with Paddy Upton on FutureLearn, to any coach interested in going beyond drills and games.]
I could tell you were an Arsenal fan before you even admitted it in your post!
The role of a coach, no matter what sport or level, is challenging and diverse. We as coaches sacrifice hours upon hours designing, delivering and reflecting on sessions along with the continuous tasks of communicating to players, parents and colleagues.
I think most coaches, in my experience, don't do it for the recognition at all. However, when all is said and done its the appreciation from those within the environment that is really rewarding. When you can see that you have really effected peoples lives, that's the reward I want (as cheesy as it sounds).
The same can't always be said within an elite environment where your reputation is based in results.
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