Rethinking Leadership Development: Beyond the GLDP

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Rethinking Leadership Development: Beyond the GLDP

Attention Coaches – The “Google Leadership Development Program” (or GLDP) is good, but it unfortunately falls short.

The more we talk with coaches the more we learn that the “GLDP” is the primary source for their leadership development program

The GLDP works like this:

Before the leadership session the coach Google’s different themes, exercises, and ideas to discuss and do during their leadership session. The coach ends up creating a hodgepodge of material from various sources and they patch it together to facilitate with their athletes.

Are you using the “Google Leadership Development Program?”

If you are, we celebrate you for pouring into your athletes’ leadership development.

But what if we told you, that the current “Google” approach is good but it often falls short in producing the level of development and growth you desire to see?

Let us explain why

GLDP: Siloed Approach

Great leadership programs are designed to continue building. Each new layer of teaching needs to be strategically designed to stack on top of the previous foundation as the player continues to build upward. Having new and randomly assorted lessons each session doesn’t develop a foundation and isn’t the most effective building approach.

Exercises’ Framework Matters

For example, someone could randomly google and stumble upon our “My 6” exercise, read about it, and choose to do it with their team. Here’s the problem, the “My 6” exercise is great but what makes it great is when it’s presented within the teaching of the Green Team, Lifeguarding, and our Verified program. Putting “My 6” together with those three brings “My 6” to life. If randomly found on Google and implemented I’d give “My 6” a grade of a C but when presented within the full framework I’d grade it an A+

Consistency in Language Matters

Introducing a new teaching every week from a completely different source each time doesn’t allow for consistency of language. Studies continue to show there is tremendous power in shared language.

Lack of Preparation Shows in Sessions

More often than not coaches that rely on GLDP find themselves at various moments in their season scrambling for good content. “Crap, we have our leadership session tomorrow, let me google something real quick” is a common approach. And that lack of preparation (which is understandable BTW, as Coaches have a lot on their plate) shows through during the sessions and players recognize it. And when the players feel the coach isn’t all in and at times is “just putting something together last minute” it diminishes their engagement level. We’ve seen it and we’ve heard the stories.

Personalized GLDP Exercises: Caveats

It’s great to find an exercise that a random team in Tennessee is doing but just because it’s worked for them, doesn’t mean it’ll work for you. What else are they doing? Did they do something last year that’s allowing this exercise to work for them this year? Do they do a series of things after implementation to bring it to life? Does this exercise work for all teams at all levels? Has it been tested over the years and with hundreds of teams to ensure it works in all situations? What does the data say about it?

The first step to building a thriving leadership program is committing to the practice of professional development. The second step is finding the right program/curriculum that has been tested, continues to build over time, and has demonstrated its credibility across multiple sports and verticals. And if you don’t get the second step right it diminishes the effect the first step can provide.

GLDP is good but as we often say in Lead ‘Em Up, good is not good enough if better is an option.

The one benefit the GLDP has is it’s FREE. But like most say, you get what you pay for. So for coaches who use the GLDP because of the budget restraints we understand and get it, that is also why we have recently made our Green Team Framework available at a lower cost.

If you cannot jump into our full membership, get started with the Green Team Framework today. This 7-part program will transform your team like it’s doing for thousands of teams around the world.

Have fun and #LeadEmUp

Have your Players ever come out flat?


Have your players start every game with the right balance of energy and focus!

Get your FREE exercise and get started with Lead ‘Em Up right NOW!

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Get your FREE exercise and get started with Lead ‘Em Up right NOW!