Building a Culture

A.P.E.S. - Building a Culture


Culture defines what a program is and where it is going in the future.  I get the fortunate opportunity to create a culture in my classroom every year as a high school teacher and also get to create the culture for the baseball program I coach at the high school level.  I believe a program is only as successful as the culture that is developed within the program.   The culture of the program is the foundation of what you will be about and what will drive the day-to-day commitment to excellence.  Let's discuss the A.P.E.S culture... 


A - Attitude:  The Attitude is in your control.  It is not up to the coach, teacher, parent, etc.  You control your attitude and only yours.  Regardless of the circumstances, having a great, positive attitude is something I want my students and players to have each day they show up in class, field and/or in the bowling center.  Legendary Coach Lou Holtz said, "Virtually nothing in this world is impossible if you just put your mind to it and maintain a positive attitude."


P - Process:  "Focus on the journey, not the destination.  Joy is found not in finishing an activity but in doing it." Greg Anderson.  It is so important to get students and players to believe in the process so we get the desired outcome.  By focusing on the things you can control rather than on outcomes, you allow yourself to become more successful, almost instantly.  The process involves doing the little things that get you and your team better a lot at a peak performance level.    


E - Effort/Energy:  Let's maximize our 86,400 today!  That's the mindset I tell my students/players every day as they enter the classroom, bowling center, etc.  This is the number of seconds we are all given each day.  Effort and energy is in our control.  We are given a fixed amount of time as a player whether it be practice or competition.  Our mindset must be to bring our greatest energy and put forth our greatest effort.  I love athletes who show up and compete every day with the goal to dominate the day!


S - Service:  Let's call it Servant Leadership.  This is all about finding ways to help and serve others.  Always serve others in pursuit of excellence.  We were put on this earth to help and serve others.  A true champion is selfless. He/she naturally puts himself last. This individual manifests an “unconditional willingness to put the team or group before any of his/her individual or self-needs.” In sum, the true champion serves others.

The premier programs in all of sports have strong cultures with intrinsic character foundations.  Cultures provide an environment that promotes healthy programs and an opportunity to perform at its highest level.