Leadership Friday - Little Rock Head Coach, Chris Curry

Leadership Friday - Little Rock Head Coach, Chris Curry

Your team is on track for the most conference wins in school history. How did you turn it around so quickly?

“We had to change the mindset of the players and the culture of the program. Our team needed to learn how to get the best out of themselves and each other. We started by helping them get to a point where they didn’t care about the past or what everyone else thought about them. That allowed them to focus on the opportunity in front of them and the work that needed to be done each day. You build a program on the pillars of work ethic, accountability, & leadership and your players have to know that you truly care about them. This team knows that we care, they have developed an inner accountability among the players, they work hard, and it is fun to see them get to play for something that matters this late in the season.”

What is the most important aspect of Leadership for a Baseball Coach?

“Consistency, there is no doubt it is consistency. Baseball is about consistency and routine. It is such and up and down game and in the College Game, players need someone who will be consistent every day. Consistency starts with me as the leader. If you don't live what you are saying, they won't follow you. Your players need to know you live what you preach and as their leader there can be no distance between what you say and who you are. That kind of leadership is built on daily discipline. You must develop a daily plan and the discipline follow it."

Any leader has to find balance in their life.  All leaders are busy but Baseball Coaches are extremely busy. How do you find balance in your life?

"You have to guard your time like a fighter and decide to build into your schedule time for spiritual growth, a healthy life, & family. Then you must make the decision that nothing is going to get in the way of that time. You must constantly guard against the idea that you're always on the clock. Yes, sometimes things happen but you have to build balance in your schedule. It's a discipline. Sometimes coaches think that because we keep long hours, we are productive. Always being at the office doesn't mean your are always more productive. You must rest. I’m much more efficient when I’m rested, than when I’m drained. We all need balance and especially with our family. They are the only ones that will be there no matter what, win or lose." 

Many coaches reading this are wondering how to get the best out of their players?  What do you think is the most important component of getting a player to play their best?

"I think you can do three things.

  • Establish a Culture that allows leaders to push each other
  • Establish a Culture where your leaders are your hardest workers
  • Establish a Culture that demands day to day productivity in the small things 

    When you keep a players focus off of stats/big results and keep him focused on his daily work, holding others and himself accountable, and how he is helping the team... you get the best they’ve got. That is how you increase productivity and create a culture where each guys work, every day, matters. You must demand it. You must reward it." 

    What does Finish Empty mean to your program? How has it impacted your players?

    "Finish Empty has given us a tangible target and goal for each day. “Omaha” or “National Championship” sounds great, but the players don’t know what that looks like day to day. When you break it down into obtainable goals and objectives each day, the guys understand the standard and they can reach it. That is how they get better and we can accomplish great things. They look at what we ask them to do each day and they give all they have… from academics to the field. Don't get me wrong, we want to win Championships but the best way to reach your big dreams & goals is to make sure you are giving all you have, each day, no matter what you are doing. There is a peace of mind in knowing that you have done all you can to prepare. When it’s game day, the guy who knows he is prepared is the guy who ready for the moment. Preparation puts him and the team in the best possibly position for success and that is why we focus on Finish Empty each day." 

    In your own life… what does Finish Empty mean to you?

    "So many times it is easy for me to allow myself to be measured by society, rankings, or what everyone else thinks of me. Finish Empty does for me exactly what it does for our players. It moves my vision from things I can’t control to what I need to be focused on each day. It helps push me to be a consistent leader, give all I have for my family,  grow spiritually, and be healthy. That is what Finish Empty means in my life."

    Follow Coach Curry at @CoachCurryLR 

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