The Law of the Playmaker

“Playmakers are what we call ‘get-it-done-and-then-some’ people.”

When a team isn’t striving to be better, they lose traction and fall behind. The competition doesn’t ease up when their opposing team doesn’t feel like giving it 100 percent that week. Instead, they take advantage of mediocrity and plunge ahead to first place. That’s why teams need playmakers.

Every team has a playmaker. Playmakers are what we call “get-it-done-and-then-some” people. When a teammate is losing motivation, a playmaker brings the drive.

So, how do you spot the playmakers on your team? A true champion exemplifies these characteristics:

  • Ambition: A playmaker has high goals, hates to lose, and puts goals above ability.
  • Coachability: A playmaker takes advice and is easy to coach. His humility gives him an eagerness to learn, and is easily approachable amidst scrutiny. He is willing to follow rules and directions.
  • Aggressiveness: A playmaker is assertive, and will do anything to be the best. He is a great competitor.
  • Leadership: A playmaker sets a good example. His fellow team members respect him because he mixes well with everyone. Others follow his lead and take his advice.
  • Take-Charge Attitude: A playmaker will take over when something goes wrong. When under pressure, he does resolves problems.
  • Hard Working: A playmaker is the first at practice, and the last to leave. He does extra work to improve. He never misses the workouts or gives excuses. He is a self-starter.
  • Physical Toughness: A playmaker develops toughness through hard work. He leads in conditioning. He takes training rules seriously and trains year-round.
  • Mental Toughness: A playmaker never has a give-up attitude. He ignores heat, cold, and pain. He has no excuses for obstacles.
  • Psychological Endurance: A playmaker stays with the task until it is finished. He will give his best against top competition. He is reliable and accountable to his team.

The profile of a playmaker makes for a sound leader. He brings a level of intensity that is electric. A playmaker finds energy in making things happen, stirring up the team, and doing whatever it takes to push it to the next level.

A true playmaker leads a team with humility. Arrogance is not a part of the description. Every move made by a playmaker is not for his success, but for the success of his team. He will, above all, model a willingness to serve the big picture rather than improve his own game.

When looking for the playmaker on a team, remember that a true leader knows there is something greater than himself. His leadership creates a unity of trust and reliability, because without trust, there is no team.