The Power of Positive with Jim Thompson, Founder & Chief Executive Officer, Positive Coaching Alliance

Jim Thompson, founder and CEO of Positive Coaching Alliance, started PCA in 1998 to transform the culture of youth sports into a Development Zone™ with the goal to develop Better Athletes, Better People. PCA’s vision of youth sports as a Development Zone has attracted the support and involvement of many elite coaches, athletes, academics and business leaders in this country.

Jim received an MBA from Stanford where he was Director of the Public Management Program, named during his tenure as the nation’s top non-profit business management program. He has written nine books on youth sports including: Positive Coaching, The Double-Goal Coach, Shooting in the Dark, Elevating Your Game and Developing Better Athletes, Better People.

Jim is on Stanford’s Continuing Studies Program faculty where he teaches courses in coaching, leadership, and sport & spiritually.

In this interview, Jim and Cindra talk about:

  • Why he started Positive Coaching Alliance in 1998 and how they built a movement
  • How we can fill our emotional tank and the tanks of others
  • His ELM Tree of Mastery
  • The magic ratio of positive comments
  • The best way to respond to ensure our people know we have their backs
  • Why psychological safety is important to develop as a leader

You can find more information about Positive Coaching Alliance at and you can find Jim on Twitter @JimThompson18 and Cindra on Twitter at @Mentally_Strong.



“I’ve been passionate about the ability to help people reach their potential.” @JimThompson18
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“The goal is to develop better athletes, better people.”@JimThompson18
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“ROOTS of honoring the game: Respect for the rules, your opponents, the officials, your teammates, and yourself.” @JimThompson18
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“They don’t care how much you know until they know how much you care.” @JimThompson18
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“Perfectionism doesn’t lead to perfection. It leads to procrastination.”@JimThompson18
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