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LEADERSHIP LESSONS FROM CRICKET

Put Your Team’s Success Ahead of Your Own Ego

We are all familiar with Virat Kohli; confident committed and focused. We are also familiar with his leadership style; aggressive and in your face, to a point where he “seems” domineering and egoistic.

The operative word here is “seems”. An article titled “My Way and Mahi Way” in the Times of India 4th March 2019, gives us useful insights.

The article observes, “But when it comes to the captaincy in limited over cricket, especially in dealing with the nitty grittier on the field, Kohli has shown an unbelievable amount of flexibility. He often allows his former boss MS Dhoni to take over in the crucial stages of the contest, as he fields closer to the boundary line so that he can make the best use of his superb throwing arm and agility”.

We saw this leadership behaviour on display, during the recent ODI in Hyderabad. We saw it a month earlier as well, during a crucial ODI at Melbourne.

The article goes on to quote another player saying, “I think it comes from the tremendous respect that Kohli has for Dhoni”.

What are we witnessing here? The secret behind successful leadership! When the leader (Kohli), conquers his own ego and welcomes a subordinate (Dhoni) to take charge when needed, he is

  • Leveraging talent and brainpower for the team’s success.
  • Freeing up an additional and important resource (an athletic fielder with an excellent throwing arm in the deep).

Usually, a team is as strong as the weakest link. When the leader puts the team’s success, ahead of his or her ego, the team becomes as strong as the strongest link.

Read Up:

https://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/sports/cricket/news/for-virat-kohli-its-my-way-and-the-mahi-way/articleshow/68248985.cms,

https://taniamarieartist.wordpress.com/2013/12/10/youre-only-as-strong-as-your-weakest-link-but-as-wise-as-your-strongest/

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Ravi Santhanam

Ravi Santhanam is a Leadership Coach and Business Consultant. He brings over a decade of experience as Managing Director & CEO of large organisations. Read about the author

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