Coaches & Players,
It’s been a fun and impactful 18-months since we rolled Lead ‘Em Up out to market.
We wanted to take a moment and share a summary of our growth and some new enhancements coming to our curriculum later this year.
Through the first 18-months we’ve seen Lead ‘Em Up:
- be used by 200 high school teams
- rolled out athletic program wide in six high schools.
- represented in 39 states and six countries (London, China, Israel, Singapore, Australia & Canada) around the world
- over 5000 young athletes having experienced and gone through the program
As of today, basketball has been our dominant sport representing about 80% of the 200 teams. Lacrosse, baseball, football, soccer and softball round out the rest. That breakdown doesn’t come as a surprise as it reflects the focus we’ve had on basketball up until this point.
We’ve been focused solely on the high school space but this past summer we rolled out a pilot youth/club program with LaxFactory, a 12-team club lacrosse league based out of Frederick, MD. The pilot was a huge success. We learned valuable pieces of information that has put us in position to begin offering Lead ‘Em Up to the youth/club space late spring/early summer of 2017. Contact us if you’d like more information for your youth team or organization.
Throughout our year and a half, we’ve been so humbled, at the same time inspired by the feedback we’ve received.
Lead ‘Em Up has been proving to be what we believed it could be; a valuable tool coaches could use to help engage, impact and grow their players into stronger leaders.
The amount of learning you do in the early stages of any business is incredible and we’re no exception. From the countless interactions with coaches, we’ve learned so much about our curriculum; what stood out, what was overlooked, what moved athletes and what gaps existed. The feedback has been invaluable.
This past December our team met for two days down in Bradenton, FL at the game on Nation headquarters; white-boarding new ideas and dissecting our curriculum. Our team started the process of taking the current program and making it better then ever.
Starting late spring/early summer we’ll be releasing a newly revamped and much richer curriculum. Regardless of which volume you recently completed, all teams current and new will be utilizing the new curriculum once released.
With the things in store, I’ve never been more excited about Lead ‘Em Up and the direction of our program
New Enhancements to the Curriculum
Together with game on Nation, we’ll be re-filming all of our games this upcoming May.
The new filming will allow us to better teach and communicate to coaches the dynamics of the game on exercises. We’ll be streamlining the current tie-backs and incorporating some new lessons and observations that can be used to even more effectively coach your players.
We’ll also be adjusting the games to better connect to the themes for each weekly lesson. The game on exercises are such a powerful component to the Lead ‘Em Up curriculum, we want to assure we’re teaching you in the most effective way so you in turn can impact your players in the most effective way.
Situational Training – Evaluate. Teach. Improve
There’s going to be a major addition to the curriculum with the rollout of our situational training exercises. We want Lead ‘Em Up to be teachers of leadership, not just coaches of leadership. Everyday your athletes are in situations that have an ability to become teachable moments. We want to help facilitate that teaching.
The situational training exercises will be a hybrid of real-life situations as well as real, yet-controlled situations that’ll challenge your players and take their leadership development to the next level.
So much of our growth as a leader comes from “doing” and this will allow your players to be more hands-on then ever before.
12-Themes, down to 8-Themes
Both our current Volume One and Volume Two are set-up with 12-weekly sessions, each session designed to be 30-minutes. What we learned is, 30-minutes isn’t enough time. Teams were quickly going through each session trying to keep it within the 30-minutes. Unfortunately, in that time allotment, it wouldn’t allow the various components the necessary time to develop and “breathe.”
With the addition of the situational training along with other enhancements, the format needs to change.
So we decided to make an adjustment; the new curriculum will go from 12-weekly themes down to 8-weekly themes. Each session will no longer be 30-minutes but rather a fuller, richer 45-50 minutes. There may be some parts of the curriculum that look familiar but there will be a tremendous amount of new content we believe you’ll enjoy.
Understanding the dynamics with timing and being sensitive to busy team schedules, each of the 8-sessions can be done in the 45-50 minute timeframe or broken into two 25-minute halves. We will be designing the curriculum to have a clean break in the middle, if you choose to break it into two sessions. Breaking each theme into two sessions will give you up to 16-sessions that’ll provide you additional flexibility to use the program in-season and portions of it during your offseason. Completely up to you!
New Kickoff Week
Moving forward, “week one” of the program will no longer be the first session of the curriculum. We’ll be providing a slow ramp into the program to help better communicate expectations and mentally prepare the players, rather then putting them right into the action week one. Think preseason vs. regular season or a scrimmage vs. game one.
During the kickoff session you’ll take your team through two new components; our performance evaluation tool and our partner program.
The performance evaluation tool is a tool designed to help you and the players measure growth throughout the course of the season. You’ll be able to get a clear understanding where they currently are, what they struggle with, what areas need improving and measure their progress at the end of the season.
The partner program is a season-long assignment where we strategically pair off players and give them various tasks and objectives to help each other facilitate through the season.
Many of the ideas and concepts we create, we “test” with various high school teams in Maryland. The partner program became a huge hit, the players loved it and it proved to be very impactful.
Both components of the kickoff week will help you set the tone and get the players ready for what’s to come through the course of the season.
I’d be remiss if I didn’t take a moment and give a shout-out to our team at Lead ‘Em Up who all have and will continue to play a huge role and allowing this program to impact athletes across the globe.
It’s a small team, but a passionate one.
Director of Business Development & Marketing: Kyle Elmendorf
Director of Technology: Greg Galipeau
Director of Finance: Sarah Neufeld
Content Partners (game on Nation): Steve Shenbaum, Blair Bloomston, AJ Lee & Chris Friday
Social Media Coordinator: Tucker Herzberg
Accountant: Chris Hass
Consultant: Chris Woodside
If you’d like to be provided updates on the new curriculum; release dates, new content ideas, etc. make sure to subscribe to our monthly newsletter by signing up here.
If you’re new to Lead ‘Em Up and would like to see a preview of our curriculum, you can sign-up to receive a free preview here.
Thank you for all of the support over these first 18-months and allowing Lead ‘Em Up to be part of your program. We look forward to continuing to grow with you.