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What do you do on your worst day?

What do you do on your worst day?

Nicola Hopes

19 July 2022

So, I had the absolute joy of watching the Lionesses (England Women’s Football Team) trounce Norway by a record breaking 8 – 0 last Tuesday evening in the Euros. 

The team were on fire. Every ball chased down. Every pass perfectly placed. Every player showed heart and desire. It was awe inspiring.  

But… I couldn’t enjoy the game as much as I wanted to because I was too busy shouting at the TV (ask my husband, I do it a lot with sport!). 

Why all the anger? Well, Martin Sjögren, the Norway Manager, just sat back and watched his team disintegrate to a first half score of 6-0. 

Norway are no slouch. They’ve won the Women’s Euros twice and were seeded 8th for the competition.  

But the game plan obviously wasn’t working.  

And he did nothing… 

No words of encouragement from the side-lines. No reminders of the game plan. No new strategy. 

He just sat in silence, staring as the game unfolded. And it made me furious. 

I couldn’t fathom a leader, any leader, just letting their team fall apart without doing anything. 

And it made me think about all the conversations I have had with clients, especially over the last 2 years. Sometimes they haven’t known what to do next. And they haven’t had all the answers. But they did something! 

  • They organised a team virtual social to see how people were 
  • They gave their team flexibility in their workday 
  • They assembled key people to generate ideas to be able to serve their customers in the midst of a catastrophe  
  • They held creative sessions with me to find new solutions based on what other (non-competing) clients were doing 

Great leadership is what you do on your worst day. Not your best. 

It’s easy to be a delight and inspiration when you’re winning awards. 

But what about when the wheels come off?  

You’ve heard me say it before - you don’t have to have all the answers.  

But you do have to engage people. Provide support and direction. And be visible. 

Ask yourself: what kind of leader do you want to be? #betterthanmartin  

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