7 Leadership Lessons from World Cup
7 Leadership Lessons from World Cup

7 Leadership Lessons from World Cup

FIFA World Cup 2010 has just concluded and if you have been following the games, I am sure you have learned a lesson or two. My favorite team has been Spain since the beginning seeing their performance in the last 2-3 years. Most of my friends laughed at me and just wrote me down. Spain lost their first match and opinions became stronger. Well, I was confident of Spain since the day one and it actually became stronger after they lost their first game.

As I followed the games, I understood that this time it is going to be a different one. As expected, all “favorites” were out in either the league or Super 16’s. One team which has stood out was the Spain and there are definitely lessons to be learned from them. Here are the top 6 Leadership Lessons I learned:

Persistent – Even though they lost their first match, it is their Determination to win what mattered. The only thing which they concentrated was the game. Who ever the opponent is, the game came from the heart.

This is exactly what is needed from a Leader. No matter what the situation is, who the opponent is and what the game is, you need to have the determination to handle the game. Winning and Loosing are two sides of the game and there is nothing like he/she is stronger than me, more educated than me, have more experience than me.. These are all reasons we give ourselves. The fear of loss in us becomes the strength to the opponent and this is what takes the game away. You need to be confident of yourself and play it with your heart and no matter what, success is yours.

Consistent – Consistency comes from the mind. The Determination to always excel is what makes you a winner. Failure is the stepping stone to success, and if you close your mind thinking that the game is over, it is long over. Consistency is a must quality in each of us to make the difference and this does not come in a day, it is a constant practice. Also, when you are being consistent, you do not change the rules of the game, but you change the way you play. Just imagine if Gandhiji stopped his ‘Non-Violence’ strategy because he is not able to move forward? Would we have got Independence? He kept to the rules of the game, but kept on sharpening his playing skills which ultimately achieved what has to be achieved. From the beginning the Spanish kept to their cool side and only concentrated on being the wall to the opponent. They used every opportunity to hit a goal.

n FAILURE = 1 SUCCESS – It does not matter how many times you loose, but it matters if you have won the crucial game or not. In real life, no one wins everyday, but just because of that, if you stop practicing being consistent and determined and kept on changing your strategy, you will NEVER win. Only when you fail many times will you know how to be successful. Do you think it was any different with the Spain matches?

Goal! – You should DEFINE and quantify what you want to achieve and this is the key to success. But, this does not mean you bend the rules to reach your goal. In movies, we see always the Villan bends rules to become the winner, but the Hero always plays the game following the rules, and who wins? Even though movies are fictitious, the fiction comes from real life. The Spanish always got their goals (remember, they hold a record this year for scoring the least number of goals and still winning what matters) when they wanted to. They has to work hard for it, but when you are just determined to get it, you know you would get it.

TEAM WORK – Last but not the least, its all in the Team. Team should stick to their roles and live up to play the best of their capacity all the time. If one starts thinking that I am superior than the other, that’s it, the game is all over. Each one in the Spanish team came from different parts of the country but played together for one club until they achieved what they want. It’s all in the TEAM and there is never an Individual Winner, also will never be.

Play the way, the Game needs to be Played – You are playing a very truthful and committed game, but opponents are not always the same. You do not run away from a mosquito, but you do run when you see a Tiger. Why? In the last two games which mattered, the Spanish played the way the opponent was playing. With Germany, there were no fouls at all, but with the Dutch, the match holds a record for the maximum number of cards. However, one key aspect here one needs to remember, this should not deviate from the way the game needs to be played. You mend your game and not the rules!

Stay Cool – ALWAYS: If you noticed the games played, Coach played an important role and the one thing you notice is that he has always been cool.  No game can be played in tension and no game can be won with a disturbed mind.

The most important aspect of Leadership is keeping yourself Cool and Lite, else every decision you take turns out to be a disaster.

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