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Kovar Systems
Staff Development Point to Ponder

Does Your Staff Know It's Okay to Fail

By Jeramy Sipes

This week’s blog is from Renshi Jeramy Sipes, one of our talented Success Coaches and veteran instructors. Renshi Sipes has  been training since 1994 and is a 4th Degree Black Belt Instructor (Renshi) within our Kovar’s Satori Academies. He also trains in Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu and boxing.

What if I told you that failing is the key to success and growth in any area of life? It may sound counter intuitive at first, but it’s rare to be great at something that you haven't done yet. The only way we achieve greatness is to keep getting up and trying again until you get it right.

IMG_0830-484168-edited.jpgWhen learning to punch, kick, or apply a joint lock we expect our students to struggle. We know it’s part of the process. But does your staff know that the very act of teaching follows those same principles, and that they should expect to struggle or even fail several times on their path to becoming a great instructor, regardless of how well they may know the technical moves they want to teach?

Teaching is particularly interesting because every time you step on the mat with a class it is a unique experience. You may have encountered something similar before, but I think it is safe to say that no two classes are ever truly the same. Because of this, no matter how well you may prepare your staff, and no matter how well they prepare themselves, they can never be 100% ready for the next class. Something will be different and new, and that means they may struggle as they learn to adapt. This is a critical point to remember, for us and for them.

I believe this adaptation process of going through not only the successes but also the failures of teaching to be what provides an instructor’s skills the time and seasoning for them to become great.  

Here are a few things to keep in mind when trying to build the next generation of Instructors...

  1. Prior to them performing a new task, give them a strong foundation of knowledge, resources, and possible past experiences.
  2. ALWAYS be their biggest fan or support person (they believe in you, make sure to return the favor).
  3. If and when they fail, ask questions and help them recover from this experience .
  4. Let them know how proud of them you are…and why.
  5. Allow them to perform a similar task again – sooner rather than later – to help them overcome any fear they may have.
  6. Be there for them when they are successful. Reinforce their success.
  7. Recap with them why they were successful. Help them connect this success to their perseverance over their past "failure.”

The only way for someone to get good at anything is continued repetitions with the right intentions over time.  

Your up-and-coming staff is hungry to learn. They are eager and willing to do new things. They need to know if they "fail" you will be there for them, that you will be there to support them in their successes and mistakes all the same, and that you understand because you have “failed” before too.

If you would like access to our Kovar Systems Resource Library, team of Success Coaches, and other resources to grow your school, we offer a free school assessment by appointment by clicking here.

by Jeramy Sipes