Sat, Jul 16, 2011
CEO As Coach? Ways to Win.
Pia Sundhage may be a sports coach (U.S. Women’s Soccer), but she shows more savvy than many a CEO.
Can you identify the top 7 leadership techniques that Pia used to turnaround a failing
and dysfnctional U.S. women’s soccer tem, taking their performance and spirit
up a couple of notches? Jere’ Longman’s article in today’s NY Times is
worthwhile reading for any leader.
Read the article, then see how you did:
A Whole New Pitch For U.S. Soccer
How did you do?
1. Define your CEO job first and foremost as what no one other than you can do
– she made team motivation and culture change her personal priority
– she stayed out of involvement in every pass and every shot
2. Ask about the mindset of your team and listen, especially for aspirations
– she met with each of the team and probed their motivation for showing up and
their desire to win
3. Redefine then change expectations (“culture”) with Signal Acts
– she used music to get their attention and to create an expectation of
something different afoot
– she used positive reinforcement to underscore desired
mindset changes (positive attitude vs. fear, composure vs. volatility, risk is
ok vs. dont make mistakes, teamwork wins)
– she made dramatic shifts in personnel both to win and to walk the talk
4. Model the behabvior
– in addition to the positive reinforcement and risk takeing, she showed up calm
under fire to model compusure
5. Build on team strengths
– she continued to exploit athleticism while changing the culture and beginning the shift to disciplined
6. Adapt to competitive conditons
– she recruited the controversial goalkeeper (Solo) back because of her talent and drive
– she adapted defenses and individual roles to opponents’ playbooks
7. Set a sequence for improvement and growth
– Only after the above has she shifted focus to an agenda to upgrade skills
Your situation isn’t the same? Of course not. So adapt the ideas to your own
style, team and circumstances.
That’s my view. What’s yours?
N.B. Want to learn more about leadership? Visit the website of the best CEO membership organization in the world:
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