Leadership Lessons With The Lionesses
Building A Winning Team
This summer we had a masterclass in what calm leadership and teamwork really look like as Sarina Weigman led her team to victory as the champions of European football.
With a history of transforming teams into serial winners, it would be a missed opportunity if I failed to review what we might take from her leadership style.
What stood out for me during Sarina Wiegman’s interview, looking shell-shocked and exhilarated by her team’s win, was her comment when asked what had made the difference.
“Behaviour – we all agreed on behaviour and really lived it .”
When I’m working with senior leadership teams we carve out a good chunk of time to talk about the behaviour of the team. It’s interesting to see how some leaders react to the topic. Talking through the ‘soft stuff’ can feel uncomfortable, unnecessary and unnerving.
Speaking about her appointment as the England coach the FA Director of Women’s Football commented;
“Sarina was our number one choice. The perfect cultural fit which is crucially important in building a winning team. Her technical expertise, leadership skills and winning mentality is hugely impressive. She’s a people person, easy to talk to and very caring. She places great importance on building the right relationships with the players. She is also steely, a winner who pays enormous attention to detail and provides honest feedback. We know she will be happy to take tough decisions when they have to be made.”
The key to Leadership Effectiveness as demonstrated by this winning team is being aligned on the goal, knowing the purpose of the goal and agreeing on how the team is going to show up to get there.
What we all witnessed was a team with a solid foundation, deep routed beliefs for what is possible, and a level of camaraderie that meant egos were not invited. All norms and behaviours that differentiated their performance and saw them lift the trophy.
I’m watching this space with anticipation to see what happens next…
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