According to the CompuSports Media Exchange, there are five essential leadership skills: responsibility, morale, work ethic, skill and respect. Experts disagree about whether great leaders are born or developed, but they agree that leadership skills improve with use. Becoming a successful leader is important not only for athletes, but for the coaching staff as well.
While on the field of play, a skilled leader takes charge of the team without coaching supervision. He exhibits good sportsmanship and encourages its replication among fellow players. An effective leader is self-confident but not arrogant, and he maintains a positive attitude even during difficult circumstances. People are willing to follow one who is confident in his abilities. A leader is accountable for his actions, such as arriving at meetings on time and knowing the playbook, and he inspires similar behavior in his companions. A compelling leader possesses and models an exceptional work ethic. He continually seeks advice from the coaching staff to improve his skills. He makes every effort to be in top form and expects his teammates to do the same. USA Basketball, the official youth basketball association, states, "No one cares how much you know until they know how much you care." In short, leaders earn respect by sincere expressions of compassion, insight and warmth.