Team culture is commonly driven by the team leadership and coach, but built upon by the athletes. According to Stacy Danley, all of them do share a common belief in expected behaviour and consequences, team goals and values, ultimately creating an environment of unity and respect, regardless of the outcome.
Team culture is not transferable from one club or team to the next. While the expectations from the players may remain consistent, their personalities and talent would vary. Hence, coaches need to adapt their approaches toward developing a team culture accordingly.
Stacy Danley marks a few vital aspects of building a positive team culture
Without a positive team culture, many players in the team can lack a sense of purpose and feel that they do not belong. They shall have a limited desire to want to improve their own game, as these players may think that they are never going to make it. Moreover, if the team culture is negative, certain players can even become withdrawn, too afraid to speak or act out of character to avoid embarrassing themselves or the team. Such an environment does not benefit anyone in the team.Hence, all coaches and team leaders must encourage the development of a positive team culture
There are many components that contribute to a positive team culture. Here are a few of them:
- Clear values and identity: A positive team culture starts with the creation of well-defined values and a clear identity. These values are meant to guide the actions, decisions, and behaviour of the team. When every player shares a common understanding of what the team stands for, it ultimately fosters a sense of unity and purpose.
- Trust and accountability: Trust is highly vital for any team to be successful on the field. Every player must trust their teammates and coaches, and be aware that everyone is working towards a common goal. Accountability is important to know that everyone is working towards a common goal. It makes sure that individuals take responsibility for their actions and commitments.
- Positive leadership: Coaches and team leaders have a huge role to play in shaping the team culture. Positive leadership tends to involve setting a good example, fostering a supportive environment and providing guidance. Leaders need to prioritize the well-being of the players to see to it that they contribute to a positive team culture.
- Effective communication: Maintaining effective and open communication is critical to building a positive team culture. Coaches, players and even the supporting staff must feel comfortable expressing themselves, providing feedback and sharing ideas. Clear communication lowers the odds of any kind of misunderstanding coming up and promotes collaboration.
- Mutual respect: Respect is considered to be the cornerstone of a positive team culture. Every player must treat each other with respect, no matter their age, performance or background. Maintaining a culture of respect can significantly improve teamwork and create an inclusive and welcoming environment for all the players.
As per Stacy Danley, a positive team culture put focus on player development, both on and off the field. Coaches must be invested in helping athletes grow their skills, improve their performance, and develop as individuals.