Last week I facilitated a Real Colors workshop for the Penn State Lady Lions. Based on the Myers Briggs, Real Colors is a temperament assessment that helps people discover why they do what they do and understand why others do what they do. It’s one of my favorite tools to use with teams because of how quickly it translates to better communication and stronger trust. (Click here for more info)
The first time I did a Real Colors workshop with the Lady Lions was back in 2011 (before I joined the staff here). Since then Real Colors has become part of our lingo—we refer to it nearly every day and even use it in the recruiting process. It’s been a key in developing the kind of chemistry that helped us three-peat as Big Ten Champions.
The team gained some important insights through last week’s workshop that are helping us continue growing toward a championship culture. For example, we have a number of “oranges” on our team. These are the fun-loving, highly competitive individuals who love, love, love to win. They want to beat you on the court, in cards and to the stoplight. The interesting thing was that our oranges let their “orange” come out everywhere but on the court. For some reason, their enthusiasm and fun-spirited nature fell silent between the lines.
Coquese has talked to them about “being orange” on the court before, but for some reason it finally clicked in the workshop. The next morning in our staff debrief we came up with some ways to help them bring those qualities to the court…the result was nothing short of amazing! The vibe in practice the next day was the most fun I’ve seen these players have on the court since they got here! There was fun, encouragement and enthusiasm, along with a heightened focus that led to a very productive practice.
That’s the power of teaching your players about their temperaments and the strengths they bring to the team most naturally, and then using that information to create an environment where they can be successful.