Let’s Talk About Why

Let’s Talk About Why

How do you get the most out of your team – the best work, the brightest ideas, the biggest commitment to a project?

I heard the coach of the Canada women’s national soccer team, John Herdman, speak a few months ago. Given his experience working with soccer teams around the world, I was interested in hearing what he had to say about success, motivation, and determination. Herdman joined the Canadian women’s soccer team following their disheartening last-place finish at the 2011 FIFA Women’s World Cup. He was determined to push them towards greatness, and later that year steered them team to the podium at the Pan American Games, where they defeated Brazil to win gold. Since then, he has continued to encourage the team to become a strong, connected group of individuals capable of great success.

I’ve been thinking about how he leads the team, and it has stuck with me. His theory is founded in three factors that are interdependent on one another:

Passion, discipline, and vision.

Herdman believes that passion drives the discipline required to achieve goals, and these goals create the vision. Without passion, there is no connection to a vision, and as such, no discipline to get there.

So, if passion is the root of success for a team like the Canadian women’s soccer team, how do we recreate that in our business world?

Passion stems from understanding and more importantly, believing in why you’re doing something. Sharing your organizations’ core values and your “why” help to get the entire team on track. Once every employee in an organization starts to believe in why they’re doing what they’re doing, big things can happen.

Don’t know what your “why” is? It might be time to figure it out.

Even though the FIFA Women’s World Cup Canada is over, and team Canada lost to England in the quarter-final, I’ll bet the team never loses sight of their passion. With a leader like Herdman instilling that passion, it’s guaranteed that they will eventually achieve their vision.

Trish Kushniruk


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