Learning to lead others isn’t always easy. And for coaches, it’s at the very core of what they do. For them, it helps to have a coaching philosophy to guide their efforts. It helps them to keep everything they do oriented toward the right goals and in line with their values. And it helps them communicate those goals and values to the people they’re leading. Here’s how to develop a coaching philosophy.

Figure Out What You Value
The first step in developing a coaching philosophy is to figure out what values should be at the center of your work. This is critical because it keeps you centered on what matters and helps you to deal with external pressures as you do your job. It’s also the primary way that your coaching style will come to reflect who you are as a person. That will make your job as a coach more natural and more personally fulfilling.

Map Out Actions to Support Your Values
The next step is to decide what specific actions support the values you’ve identified in the first step. If one of your values is to maintain high standards of integrity, you may make clean living and adherence to strict ethical standards the corresponding action for that value. And if one of your values is to always compete, you might wish to create a means of measuring the effort of those you’re coaching.

The idea is to translate your values into a methodology that will help your team achieve its goals. This applies in any coaching field, be it sports, personal growth, or business. It is the structure that everything you do must adhere to.

Create a Mission Statement
With your values and their supporting actions defined, the next thing to do is create a mission statement. It should explain exactly what you hope to achieve as a coach. And it should draw on the actions you’ve defined to explain how you intend to do it. A good, clear mission statement should make it easy for everyone you work with to know what you expect of them, and how they can work together for a common goal.

At the end of the day, success as a coach means having a philosophy that suits you and those you lead. And you may evolve your philosophy over time as you gain experience. What’s most important is to work to understand yourself as well as those around you, and never stop trying to improve.