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“To add value to others, one must first value others.” – John Maxwell
I did a lot of martial arts throughout my childhood and young adulthood. I remember that when I got my first black belt, I felt like I had earned the right to become an authority figure and that everyone “below” me had to take my command. But in reality, what did I know? I hadn’t genuinely taken the time to teach and improve someone else. As I got older and earned a few more stripes in life, I began to see that being a leader entailed so much more than establishing yourself. It also required all the difficult stuff – patience, understanding, communication, openness, critical thinking – which no textbook or seminar could really teach you on its own. Basically, it requires that you actually work with people and care about them.
The title of coach or trainer is a type of leadership role. The way in which you promote yourself has a lot of bearing on the type of people you attract and the type of culture you build. There’s a distinction between those who just promote themselves and those that promote the people they help. The former knows how to play the game, but unfortunately perpetuates the false idea that looks, branding, and personal achievements alone translate to actual teaching skill.
The ability to teach people and teach people well takes time. Experience is non-negotiable. There has to be a willingness to teach people of varying skill levels and learning potential to build a good foundation. This takes another level of willingness to learn and implement more than one (effective) method to fit individual needs. It’s a reciprocal process: you’re nothing as a coach/trainer without the people who help grow you.
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