When your athletes get along as friends, it can help unify your team. If they get too comfortable, however, they won’t be prepared to compete when times get tough. That’s why it’s important to draw out players who are willing to step away from their friend roles and become the leaders who can guide your team forward in times of adversity.
How do you get leaders to step forward? Create an environment that pushes your athletes out of their comfort zones, perhaps with tough conditioning, difficult drills, or grueling practices. When you test your team, you’ll find that leaders will naturally step forward and take charge.