Yesterday I had the privilege of taking part in the What Works Summit 2015 at the Institute for Rowing Leadership. Our afternoon was filled with break out sessions and boat meetings relating to the first 500m of the race. We covered topics like practicing, priming, and executing on race day. One of the best parts of the day was the panel discussion after dinner. I was lucky enough to be placed in a small break out group with Charlie Butt, the Harvard Head Men’s Coach, as our leader. Charlie is one of the best story tellers and coaches I’ve met.
Our task was to discuss Leaders and Managers. Are they the same or different? Charlie told us of his days working with Harry Parker as well as his current daily routine at Newell Boathouse. It quickly became apparent to me that a good leader and good manager aren’t necessarily the same thing, but a good leader is most often a good manager.
Charlie has mastered the ability of dividing up tasks, assigning responsibilities to athletes and assistant coaches, and encouraging everyone to get the job done through positive suggestion rather than strict demands. To him there is no task to small or beneath a coach and a leader, whether it’s keeping the furnace at the boathouse going or recruiting new athletes. By giving his athletes and coaches the jobs they are good at, he instills his trust and confidence in their ability to get the job done. He’s also very good at knowing when someone needs support to keep moving in the right direction.
What are your thoughts on Leadership? How does management play into being a leader to you?
Rest well today and get excited for CRASH-B’s tomorrow!