1. Make it about your team

Every leader should skill themselves up. We all read up on what are the best practices out there. We all go to conferences and listen to the best out there and take note about what they’re good at. We all see what the best in the world are doing in their own field. We all want to take a little bit out of others that we see who are successful. But whatever we take on board must suit the group of people we’re leading. Each group needs a certain leadership style and the leader must adapt to the group. Not the other way around

2. Leadership when you lose

Some will tell you the only leadership worth taking note of is that of a team that’s just lost. In any sphere or field, it’s the team that has not met it’s targets that needs real leadership. Looking at what has happened, looking at what the team did and giving solutions to fixing the issue isn’t as simple if everyone is under pressure. This is when the good leaders are at their best, giving clear and simple messages to steer the group to not making the same errors.

3. A Team under pressure 

– What does your team want to hear

– What do you want to say

– What does your team NEED to hear

Those three things are often miles apart when you’re under pressure as a leader. If my team is losing and I’m emotionally caught up in it, then what I WANT to say often isn’t helpful. Also, the team who are under pressure usually WANT to hear something from the leader and will often won’t be what they NEED to hear. If you can take egos and emotion out of important decisions, you’ll have more chance of getting the message right.

4.  Keep telling stories 

A group who is together for a long while will need more than the ‘usual’. Keeping it interesting and engaging in the workplace can be a challenge. I talk to my team a lot about HOW we do the WHAT. What we do is important, but it’s how we do it that I think sets my teams apart the from others. Explaining the HOW needs constant updates as the landscape in my industry is constantly adjusting.

5.  It’s got to be more than just winning 

Do you have a why? If it’s simply about being good or being the best then there’ll be a shelf life to your leadership. More than ever in today’s world people want a WHY. Each team, group or organisation has a mini society of its own. The ethics of this mini society need to be healthy and progressive. My Team’s WHY is specific to us as people, but I will share with you that we don’t want to win if it means cheating or cutting corners. We’d rather come 2nd in a healthy environment as we know we’ll be better the year after.

Do you have a why ?

Written by Brian McDermott 

If you want to hear more from Brian McDermott he will be speaking at our next event The SHE Show North East, 26th April 2022, St James’ Park, Newcastle United Football Club.


Brian McDermott, Field to Office

Brian McDermott is a former Royal Marines Commando, former professional player with Bradford Bulls and currently Rugby League coach. Brian’s is a successful coach who has drawn on all his experiences from the his 3 fields of elite performance to create a unique style of coaching, leadership and management. Brian currently shares his time between Rugby League coaching and running Field to Office.

Please note, the views expressed by the original article author are theirs alone and do not necessarily represent those of Washingtondowling Associates Ltd or The SHE Show and therefore we take no responsibility for the content or accuracy of this post.