Thursday, August 28, 2008

Life without a coach

Fred Dagg named his 1st XV in his anthology all those many years ago. E Hillary, D Dobbyn, K Te Kanawa, S Neil, A Curnow, R Hotere, P Jackson, L Tamahere, B Finn, N Finn, K Hume, M Mahy, J Frame.
Interesting that Fred should use rugby as a vehicle to hold up some of the true greats of New Zealand. Perhaps he was making a point about how important All Blacks are and how little we value our true heroes. Following on from my George Nepia theory perhaps we could take this a little further.
At a recent tribute to my uncle Boris, Marty Lee spoke how Boris used rugby as a vehicle to mould and teach boys the life skills, life lessons.
I've always run with the theory that you get life replicated within a tight team framework, and I know Marty was bang on the money when he suggested this.
Leadership in education is so closely replicated in a rugby coaching scenario. 

The Staff want everything handed on a plate
A staff member treats their peers with no respect.
A staff member wants to do what they want to do.
Staff members operate in clicks
Some staff are lazy.
The Principal has all the say.
The Principal dictates what everyone will do.
The principal runs and controls all self improvement.
The principal delegates everything and does nothing.
The Principal has a poor relationship with his teachers.
The Principal is a dip shit.

Now replace Staff Member with "player" and The Principal with "coach". What are the chances of this team winning a game. And the answers to the problems are easy if you look at them from a sporting perspective. If you cant find the answers, or your "coach" is a lemon either make lemonade or get a new coach.

Rugby is one of those games where you prepare as a team, you laugh, love, cry, bitch, argue, invent, reinvent, study, apply, analyse, reapply, sing, win, lose, laugh again, and to play with your very best friends is an amazing buzz.
Where I think Fred Dagg has missed the boat is that my very best 1stXV will play as a team, and they would have an awesome coach, one who can action all of those verbs above, uncle Boris Srhoj.

So Fred give us your coach or I will loan you uncle Boris and he will turn your team of champions into a champion team.

fred dagg from Luke Sumich on Vimeo.


Anonymous said...

i was interested in the wee list of staff and principal traits above. Doesn't this relate to any job and any profession? after all people are only human and humans are by definition are not infallible. What actually makes the difference is the people around them that never allow them to deal and move on with small indiscretions or failings. more often than not people in positions of power focus on the minors rather than the positives which then serves to create a vicious circle and therefore an unsuccessful team. I know this because it is because i am experiencing this behaviour at the moment and it is very difficult to not become negative when all respect for the person in power seems to have been lost. how does one then remain part of a team?

Podgorani said...

Yes it relates to any job any profession. My experience in rugby and teaching makes it real for me.
The real question you want the answer to, is what to do when caught in that negative circle, whether you are teacher or principal.
Firstly i think if you are in a bad situation and the boss is a dick, then usually it becomes them and us and it gets uglier and uglier. For me in this situation it gets personal, I have a set of values and pride and am not prepared to get down to "he said, she said". I will just give, give and give, if I keep getting trampled on then I will keep giving. In teaching there are givers and takers. No one can ignore givers, you can ignore the shit going on around you and get on with the job supporting kids colleagues and even the boss.
Some situations are unrecoverable when the boss has gone so far that the respect is over. Usually someone has to go, and if the boss isnt then it might be you. If you dont want to be in that negative space, you may have no option. But I think it is better to go holding your head held high knowing that you went after giving and supporting kids, teachers and even that dickhead principal.
Karma is a big wheel.