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What Makes an Effective Coach?

By Michele M. Howard

The characteristics of a successful coach are many. Leading others from where they are to where they want to be requires tough love, understanding, patience, trust and much more. Whether he is on the playing field or in a work environment, an effective coach has the ability to bring out the best in individuals.


An effective coach must be able to communicate in a clear and concise manner. This starts by being a good listener. By listening to employees and players, a successful coach can identify and analyze problems, come up with a game plan to correct and solve these problems and clearly state what actions will be taken in order to achieve the set goals. Critical to the success of a team, an effective coach gives and receives feedback on a regular basis. Through good communication, individuals will have a clear understanding of what is expected of them.


Coaches must have a thorough understanding of the subject matter. They have the background training necessary to recognize weaknesses or technique flaws and know what corrective measures to use to improve performance. Effective coaches know how to get individuals or teams to perform at their highest level with success.

Dedication and Commitment

A successful coach must be dedicated in wanting others to succeed. She must have a selfless attitude, let others shine and acknowledge the accomplishments of individuals. A committed coach never stops learning, always seeks for a better way to lead, a more effective way to teach and has a never-give-up attitude.

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