Warning: this post is self-indulgent.
Fabio Capello may be an exception (Frank Rijkaard’s another). The rule seems to be that the better football coaches are drawn from the ranks of those who were at best modest professionals: Sir Alex Ferguson, Arsene Wenger, Jose Mourinho, Sven Goran Eriksson and others fit this profile.
Me? I was no more than a ‘good honest pro’, but I have days when I’m proud of my coaching skills (I did warn you).
On Monday I saw a dress rehearsal for a student presentation that was to be given today to senior managers within a large, complex organisation. It was bad, but should I risk demoralising the team so late in the day? I told the truth as I saw it and gave some advice on how I thought it should be reorganised.
This morning, the students were told their time allocation had to be squeezed down to 30 minutes from the one hour promised. The new presentation (with its key findings up front) fitted the new format. The students kept to time, spoke confidently and made their points clearly. They even gained some laughs. The client’s verdict is the one that matters – but I’m relieved and happy.
Those that can, do. Those that can’t, coach.