Leadership Lessons from Dockers' coach Ross Lyons

In the early 90’s Paul Keating remarked that every parrot in the pet shop was squawking micro-economic reform.  Today those same parrots would be squawking productivity.  While this is a multi-dimensional challenge, leadership plays a fundamental role. 

And so I thought I’d highlight a leadership lesson from Fremantle Dockers coach Ross Lyon.  He recently observed his team needed a vast improvement if they were to maintain their position on top of the ladder.  He questioned their decision making following a ‘grinding’ 7 point win over Collingwood, highlighting some specific areas: some shocking turnovers; repeatedly slipping. 

What did he say next?  “At the end of the day that starts and finishes with me, so clearly our football program needs to improve because they should be able to do it instinctively under pressure”. Wow.  How many of our leaders today adopt this perspective?  We often lose sight of the fundamental truth: we are accountable for the performance of our teams.  So if their productivity is low, you are underperforming. 

Ouch.  That puts a different slant on it.  Try looking through this prism next time your team disappoint.