There are workplace teams, and there are managers. But what about the role that straddles both worlds?

Shifting from purely doing to leading others can be a challenging transition—but with the right knowledge and skills, anyone can thrive in this role.

Player-Coach is your playbook for successfully navigating the transition from workplace team member to manager. HR experts and leadership development experts Val Markos and Tammy Martin arm you with a four-part leadership model and key concepts that will empower you to become an effective—even great—leader.

Filled with real-life experiences, stories and tips on developing the critical skills every player-coach needs to be successful, Player-Coach is your how-to guide on deftly shifting from doing to leading.

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Available now in paperback, Kindle, or audiobook!

What People Are Saying about Player-Coach

Marshall Goldsmith

Player-Coach is an easy and valuable read for any professional moving into a people leader role. It is full of insights and suggestions on being an effective leader. The authors show why what got you to the top as an individual professional, won’t get you to the top as a leader of people.”

MARSHALL GOLDSMITH, Thinkers 50 #1 Executive Coach for 10 years

Debbie Storey

Player-Coach addresses a critical need for both business and HR professionals, offering guidance for individuals transitioning from a role as subject expert to one of a team leader. Explore the four-part leadership model that will help functional experts become effective leaders. The authors give readers a blend of real-life stories, essential tips, and insight, that take new player-coaches on a journey of developing the critical skills necessary to become excellent leaders, motivators and mentors.”

Debbie Storey, President & CEO, AT&T Performing Arts Center

Tim Tassopoulos

Player-Coach is a terrific resource for either an emerging or an experienced leader. Val Markos and Tammy Martin do a great job of communicating a clear step-by-step process for becoming a more effective player-coach.”

Tim Tassopoulos, President & COO, Chick-fil-A, Inc.

Joel Garfinkle

Player-Coach is a must-read for all leaders. This book offers a fresh and enticing perspective on how to shift from player/doer to coach/leader. The most successful know how to maximize the potential of the people they lead by applying the concepts outlined in this book.”

Joel Garfinkle, Author of Getting Ahead: Three Steps to Take Your Career to the Next Level

Helene Lollis

“Much is written about the challenges faced by those promoted over their peers. By focusing on those who play and coach, Val and Tammy shine a light on the advantages that these leaders have over those rotated into leadership roles. Leaders elevated into the player-coach role are uniquely suited to identify meaningful development opportunities and on-the-job growth experiences to prepare the team for leadership responsibilities. Just another of the tried-and-true insights captured in Player-Coach!”

Helene Lollis, President & CEO, Pathbuilders

Scott Eblin

“Ripped from the playbook and case files of two top leadership coaches and former executives, Player-Coach is a highly readable, highly actionable roadmap for any team leader or manager who wants to scale the impact of their leadership. Every chapter is full of practical tips you can put to work right now. This book is clear, logical and memorable.”

Scott Eblin, Executive Coach, Speaker and Author of The Next Level:
What Insiders Know About Executive Success

Marc Efron

“Markos and Martin provide great insights and practical advice on how to master the tenuous balance between these two critical roles. It’s definitely worth a read!”

Marc Efron, President, The Talent Strategy Group

The Authors

Val Markos and Tammy Martin are the principals of Player-Coach Leadership, specializing in helping player-coaches and other leaders be the best they can be. Both Val and Tammy have worked with executives ranging from mid-level managers to C-suite executives.

Val Markos served as Executive Director of Leadership Development for BellSouth for 13 years before dedicating himself to a private executive coaching practice since 2006. He served in a variety of leadership roles in the private and public sector prior to BellSouth. Val received his PhD from University of Georgia decades ago and now teaches Leadership Development to budding organizational psychologists there.
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Val is originally from Utah and spent most of his youth there, finally leaving the Wasatch Range to attend graduate school at the University of Georgia (UGA). After spending four years (to the day!) at UGA, he left with a PhD and went to work applying his education to roles at City of Miami, Florida; U.S. Steel; and then at BellSouth where he was executive director of leadership development. Since 2006 Val has worked as principal at Vmark Consulting doing just what he loves to do: coaching executives and providing assessment services for the development and selection of leadership roles. Val and his wife, Blanche, are empty-nesters with three children and ten grandchildren spread from coast to coast. Val is an avid cyclist and sports fan. He is heavily committed to his community and his faith.

Tammy Martin began her professional career as a graphic artist before serving in various leadership roles over her thirty-year career with BellSouth and AT&T. She found her passion in working with leaders to excel at leading others, spending the bulk of her tenure in human resource management and leadership development.

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Tammy was born and raised in Georgia and has traveled frequently all over the United States for work. She received her bachelor of arts in journalism from the University of Georgia and began her professional career as a graphic artist. She was hired by BellSouth Corporation in 1986 and served in various leadership roles with increasing responsibility over her thirty-year career with BellSouth and AT&T. She spent the bulk of her tenure in human resource management and leadership development, where her passion was working with leaders across the company to excel at leading others.

Tammy established The 5 Eleven Group in early 2018, a company focused on leadership consulting and executive coaching. When she isn’t working, Tammy enjoys the outdoors, music, cooking, painting, and giving of her time to others, especially her son, Drew, and her church. Tammy and her husband, Andy, now live part time in Georgia and part time in Western North Carolina, where they enjoy the outdoors and relaxed culture.

Services

Val Markos and Tammy Martin regularly consult with leaders across a variety of industries on getting the best from their teams, by applying the 4-Part Player-Coach Leadership Model.

Individual and small-group coaching experiences are based on a simple, 30-item 360-degree assessment and follow-on coaching. If your organization promotes individual contributors to leadership roles often, this combination of assessment and coaching in the first six months of a leader’s journey can be highly effective.

Speaking engagements and workshops are highly customized to your company’s needs, and can incorporate tailored 360s to gain insight into your organization’s strengths and greatest opportunities for development.

Services are tailored to your needs and are based on:

4-Part Player-Coach Leadership Model

This model focuses on four primary focus areas for moving from subject matter expert to coaching a team of experts: Set Direction, Secure Resources, Coach Individuals, Build the Team.

7 Critical Skills

Player-Coaches need to develop 7 critical skills to maximize their success: Observe, Listen, Delegate, Communicate, Build Effective Relationships, Organize and Plan, and Be a Role Model. It is important for a Player-Coach to be aware of their areas of weakness, and ensure they are sufficiently developed in order to succeed in their job. Player-Coach Leadership has developed simple and effective approaches to helping Player-Coaches focus on developing these critical skills.

Helping Organizations Support Player-Coaches

Leaders of Player-Coaches also require support. Player-Coach Leadership works with your human resources professionals, mentors, and internal consultants so that your business understand show best to engage the support systems you need to develop the growth and development of player-coaches in your organization.

Services

Val Markos and Tammy Martin regularly consult with leaders across a variety of industries on getting the best from their teams, by applying the 4-Part Player-Coach Leadership Model.

Individual and small-group coaching experiences are based on a simple, 30-item 360-degree assessment and follow-on coaching. If your organization promotes individual contributors to leadership roles often, this combination of assessment and coaching in the first six months of a leader’s journey can be highly effective.

Speaking engagements and workshops are highly customized to your company’s needs, and can incorporate tailored 360s to gain insight into your organization’s strengths and greatest opportunities for development.

Services are tailored to your needs and are based on:

4-Part Player-Coach Leadership Model

This model focuses on four primary focus areas for moving from subject matter expert to coaching a team of experts: Set Direction, Secure Resources, Coach Individuals, Build the Team.

7 Critical Skills

Player-Coaches need to develop 7 critical skills to maximize their success: Observe, Listen, Delegate, Communicate, Build Effective Relationships, Organize and Plan, and Be a Role Model. It is important for a Player-Coach to be aware of their areas of weakness, and ensure they are sufficiently developed in order to succeed in their job. Player-Coach Leadership has developed simple and effective approaches to helping Player-Coaches focus on developing these critical skills.

Helping Organizations Support Player-Coaches

Leaders of Player-Coaches also require support. Player-Coach Leadership works with your human resources professionals, mentors, and internal consultants so that your business understand show best to engage the support systems you need to develop the growth and development of player-coaches in your organization.

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