Last Saturday the Rugby Union World Cup concluded with a fantastic spectacle of a Final between the All Blacks (New Zealand) and the Wallabies (Australia), with New Zealand coming out the Winners. However, the sport in a whole was the real Winner, as this tournament, which happens every 4 years, continued to grow in its demonstration of the values and ethics that drive its participants, administrators and fans.
So what can we learn from Rugby about Leadership (and in particular Lean Leadership)?
Rugby also honours their traditions very well and each team brings elements of their tradition with it, with the most famous being, of course, the All Blacks and their ‘Haka’. Nelson Mandela's use of the South African hosted Rugby World Cup, creating national support for their Rugby team (The Springboks), as part of his ‘healing’ of the nation during the 1995 World Cup (which they won 15-12) became legend and eventually a Hollywood Blockbuster. Honouring the traditions of an organisation for the greater good is an extremely important part of Leadership.
It is hopefully becoming clear that Rugby can teach us quite a lot about Leadership and there are a number of other examples that we can take from the World Cup:
Whilst there are many examples of great Leadership available, I believe that the game of Rugby Union truly epitomises the type of Leadership that creates a High Performance Organisation and drives Operational Excellence. If we can take inspiration from this credo of Respect, Integrity and Discipline into our Business, I believe that we will be much better off.
There are many Lean Leadership Books out there but I have reviewed those that I think are of most use on my Book Recommendations page.
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