Many people aspire to leading high performance sporting teams, organisations and national sporting bodies. However, most are unprepared for the real challenges of leadership – particularly of leading effectively in an environment of pressure, stress and high public expectations.
I am getting so sick of people talking about high performance environments, about following a process, about systems, about structures, about programs, about initiatives, about workshops and about strategies.
The name of the game is Winning – oops – there I said it.
Winning. Winning. Winning. There, I said it again.
That felt great. I’ll say it some more. Winning. Winning. Winning. Winning.
That felt so good I’ll do it again. Winning!! Winning!!!! Winning!!!!!
The W Word: Winning.
Having visited more than 30 countries in four continents in the past few years and spent time with sports leaders, coaches, athletes, sponsors, sports scientists, sports academics, sports medicine practitioners, sports administrators, government funding agencies and other sports professionals in many of the world’s leading sports systems,five world wide trends in society
(and by extension in sport) have become very clear and are screaming so loud that they can no longer be ignored.
Ignore them at your peril.
I have been lucky to be involved in high performance sport for the best part of 20 years.
I have been very very fortunate to work with Olympic Gold Medalists, World Champions, World Record Holders, Premiership Title Winners, World Cup Winners…champion athletes, teams and coaches in many different sports and in several different countries.
Quite often, when I do professional speaking or training with corporate or sporting groups, someone in the audience will ask, “What do all the winners have in common” or “From your experience, what things do all the great athletes, teams and coaches do that makes them the best”.
There are indeed some things all the great ones have in common: The Top 20 Tips on Being the Best: 20 years of experience in 500 words!
There was a time when a new head was the solution to all problems in a high performance sports team.
Team not winning – get a new head coach.
Team’s culture not right – get a new head coach.
Team’s attitude and commitment flagging – get a new head coach.
Times have changed.
A new head coach is no longer the solution in high performance sport.
Lots of athletes go to the Olympic Games – very, very few come back with a medal or even a personal best performance.
Lack of Talent? Maybe.
Poor Skill? Possibly.
The wrong parents, i.e. Genetics? Could be.
But the main reason most of them don’t win a medal is that they made five dumb (and avoidable) mistakes in the period between their selection for the Olympic team and their Olympic Games competition.
Olympic Mistakes: The Top Five Dumb Things Athletes and Coaches do heading into an Olympic Games.
There is nothing new about integrating the Mind and the Body to realise successful sports performance. However, what is new is integrating Mind and Body in all aspects of sports coaching and athletic performance every day. This article discusses Sports Psycho – Physiology and challenges athletes, coaches, sports scientists and sporting organisations to reassess how they go about applying the integrated Mind-Body concept in their daily athlete training environment.
So much of the world’s high performance sports dollars (or Yens or Yuans or Euros or Pounds or Pesos or Rands depending on where you come from), time, energy, focus and attention is spent on three things:
- Talent identification;
- Talent recruitment;
- Talent development.
Or if you like, find them, sign them, refine them.
And most of the world has still got it wrong. There is a better way.
High Performance sport is founded on a relatively simple equation: you either win or you lose.
A critical aspect in understanding the “losing process” is to find the answer to this question….were you outplayed or out-talented?
News Flash, Lausanne, Switzerland. Here is the latest news.
The IOC today announced that effective immediately there will be two Olympic Cycles.
The first one, known from this date forward as the “Pretenders Cycle” will run on the traditional four year Olympic cycle.
The second cycle, announced today as the “Contenders Cycle”, is a six year cycle. It is expected that the majority of Olympic medal winners will be using the new six year cycle.
Our Olympic reporter Wayne Goldsmith has more…..
The Olympic Medal Count is a much talked about aspect of every Olympic Games. But what does it really mean? And does it really give an indication of the performance of athletes, coaches, teams and nations at the Olympic Games? This article looks behind the Olympic medal table and asks is performance at the Olympic Games more than just the medals?