Mastering Meeting Dynamics For Results

Imagine your job rested on how your team performed in the next 45 minutes…

how would you get your message across in 5 minutes?

As we come to the end of the football season and games that decide who wins titles and promotions. And who loses and gets relegated. This is the situation football managers are facing.

The very same lessons apply in every business across the globe.

In every situation we are dealing with people. Their varying styles. And the dynamics of the group.

A statistic tells us that Managers spend 50% of their time in meetings.

Yet 65% of employees feel meetings reduce their productivity.

Effective meetings are key to bonding a team and making them work effectively. How we approach 1-1 and group meetings is key to creating the climate and culture that defines the group.

In this episode we discussed meeting dynamics. Individual responses and how to accommodate differing styles. How to ensure your message gets through and is heard in the way you want.

Some great insights and tips from:

Clark Ray

Thomas Courts

Tony Walmsley



Clark: [00:00:00] One of the things that we often do is when we work in those settings, is put meeting rules up on the wall.

Clark: If they’re not already in existence, we put something in place where people can refer to them and say, with regard to respect and the way we speak to each other and that sort of thing, but also keep it brief, get it said, get out and often in manufacturing settings, I try to move the meetings onto the shop floor.

Clark: We’re not then hidden away doing our secret managerial stuff. We’re part of the team, everybody can see what we’re doing, and if we’re just standing around doing nothing, it gets seen very quickly. It’s the manner of the meeting that’s more important than the fact that it’s a meeting at all.

Thomas: The great thing about the football industry is that the live feedback that you get from players in group meetings is almost quite involuntary. So as long as you’re receptive to it, you’ll actually know that your meeting has to be planned, it has to be impactful, and it actually has to be very, tailored to the audience.

Thomas: Because players I don’t know why, maybe Tony will have an opinion on this, [00:01:00] but they don’t actually have a great attention span in a classroom setting, so forgive me if I’ve said this in a previous meeting, but the barometer for me to actually move on from the meeting in a collective setting is the first time that the player gets fidgety So the first player that gets fidgety is usually a sign for me that the players are actually running out of attention.

Thomas: And then conversely, I think the players generally do actually like one to one time or small unit time with the coaching staff or the manager. And I know that there’s a real disparity of opinion amongst managers between whether they think that one to one meetings are useful or not. Are the players entitled to it?

Thomas: Is it valuable? I actually think that in my experience, it’s hugely valuable, to actually have that one to one time with a player where I think you can show a more human side to yourself as well. Even like the simple tokens of offering to make them a cup of tea, offering to make them a hot drink, just actually giving something back and creating [00:02:00] that climate where Perhaps there’s been a bit of tension, there’s maybe been a misunderstanding or a performance conversation that needs to happen.

Thomas: Just creating that space where head coach and player can actually have a really impactful conversation that, quite frankly, doesn’t need an agenda, it can take as long as it needs, and by the time that we actually close the door on the way out, everything’s been forgotten, even if we’ve actually had some conflict, and we can actually move forward in the relationship.

Tony: It’s interesting. I think in the group setting that dynamic of first player to show a state of unrest as an indicator, I guess it’s key indicator is that’s the person at least believes what’s being said is appropriate to them or relevant to them. They can’t connect maybe what’s being delivered to their own role, or they just give me the one little piece of information I need and let’s go out to train, so somebody that’s closest or furthest away to that, there’ll be others in the room that would sit there attentive all day. If it needs to take two hours, it’ll take two hours. I think everybody is on that spectrum somewhere along the way as [00:03:00] I, and I think I’ve said this before closest in belief and intention to me at the start, therefore will stay with me longer because of that immediate sort of connection.

Tony: And then I think the, to distill that into the, to the one to ones, it’s really about there’s two sides to that. I think one is we’re always refining our understanding of what each other wants. I get a deeper understanding of what the player wants or the person in the business. And the business gets to understand what the manager wants and we could see how aligned that is. Therefore, once we are aligned, we know exactly what we need to do or how hard we need to go at it. But the other thing is to give that player, which is very unlikely in football because of its, inherent masculinity, if you like, to give them a space where that one to one meeting is their meeting.

Tony: It’s not me saying I’m going to have a one to one meeting with you and we’re going to talk about what you need to do to play better on Saturday. We’re going to have a one to one meeting that’s a space where you can If you feel comfortable, start to share with me things that are important to you that I maybe can [00:04:00] show a level of support that you don’t maybe know is there.

Tony: And I think by giving the player that space and giving them, the player has the right to say, look, Gaffer, I don’t, it’s okay. I don’t need a one to one this week. Okay. And that might, that may be okay. Unless it’s consistent, it happens all the time that they may be in some sort of avoidance state.

Tony: But I think if you can build a situation where. The individual owns the meeting. Then there’s so much value can come out. They bring the agenda. It’s a small window where actually this guy’s given me keys to the kingdom here, I can really got something on my mind that I need to talk about.

Tony: And there’s a great richness can come out of that. 

Clark: The usefulness of a one to one has always been for me that it establishes a a core set of values to which the other parties, because obviously at some point they will get together, as you’ve just said, Thomas, in a training room, for instance and you’re trying to establish some values so that when you are in a collective setting, you can maintain the authority, so the intellectual authority necessary to [00:05:00] get that message across. I was having a conversation a couple of days ago about Unai Emery because he’s apparently renowned for doing really long detailed meetings, tactical analysis, and that sort of thing.

Clark: And the person I was talking to mentioned the fact that possibly one of the reasons he didn’t do so well at Arsenal was because the players considered themselves at a slightly higher level than when he went into Aston Villa. The Aston Villa team were on a little bit of a low because they’d just lost Steven Gerrard and so on.

Clark: And so it was a lot easier for Emery to go into Aston Villa and establish that intellectual authority and say to them, figuratively speaking, Listen, I know what I’m doing. I can get you out of this, but you’ve got to listen to me. And because they were on board so quickly and the results came so quickly, He’s then kept their attention for so much longer.

Clark: And it’s, you often see in interviews, the players saying, those meetings gone for ages. And yet they maintain that attention span that you mentioned Thomas. And it reminded me of the weekend. I saw a clip of it. I don’t even know what the [00:06:00] game was, but I saw a clip of the Chelsea players having an argument over who took the penalty.

Clark: And I thought there’s a different set of values at play here because clearly the players have much more say in the conversation. Obviously in the changing room and it translates out onto the pitch and those one to ones are opportunities for me to say to people if we’re in a room all together talking about training, it’s because I feel we need it.

Clark: As you said, Tony, it’s an opportunity for them to own the meeting, but you can as a participant in that get across your core values and there’s, you can establish that intellectual authority. Then when people will listen to you and give you the benefit of the doubt, so to speak, even if they think I’ve had enough of this, it’s clearly for my good, and it wouldn’t be putting us through this if we didn’t, if we didn’t need it.

Clark: And, you see the results at Villa. And on the last, I don’t know, because Keeping that going is another question. 

Tony: Everybody’s so focused on doing and results and output and outcome that there’s a whole host of really important stuff going on that’s not [00:07:00] that, that needs to be understood and felt and respected and accepted.

Tony: And I think that’s the biggest gains. Definitely in football, a hundred percent. And in a lot of the management sectors, the biggest gains are not how to get people more productive which is what everybody wants, the business demands that anyway. It’s not for the manager to demand that the business says we have to get this number and units out on Friday, otherwise we haven’t succeeded this week.

Tony: That demand is set. The football demand is set. If we don’t score one more goal than them, we won’t win the game. That’s the reality. The real gold, I think, is in the stuff that’s just that bit below that demand, which is how do we actually get to a different level of trust and respect with each other as humans that’s going to enhance the way we do this together?

Tony: Because the together bits where the real value will come from.

Clark: I think that’s brilliant. I don’t want to hog the microphone for too long, but I think that’s brilliant what you’ve just said there. And it’s been the focus of my work for a long time now, this idea that goals, KPIs are the driving factor in any [00:08:00] organizational setting. Whether it be a factory or a football team is a mistaken one.

Clark: Of course, everybody has goals getting up in the morning. You wake up with goals that you want to fulfill. However, underneath that, as you’ve said, values is what I’ve always worked on. Because when you’ve got 11 players out on a pitch, you, they know the process, they know the game plan.

Clark: They know all of the tactics that you’ve discussed, but it’s the values, the respect that they have for each other, the determination, the grit, the resilience, that’s the stuff. Obviously you need to have the game plan, but you wouldn’t be in the business if you didn’t have that. That’s, that should be a given.

Clark: The values the core principles by which a group of people operate, that is, is absolutely key. And in, in business settings, it’s a constant, going back to the conversation with Thomas about meetings. The reason I dislike them is because people, bosses go into them with a mindset that says we need to change the culture around this situation, around this organization, around these, this group of people, and hopefully that will [00:09:00] change the behavior. And that’s so wrong. Change the behavior. The culture will change on its own. 

Clark: The military don’t go out looking for tough, disciplined individuals with short hair, they just get any old bloke and that person will become a finely tuned military personnel simply because they’ve imposed a set of behaviors on them.

Clark: And those behaviors instilling them the values that make, The whole thing work and it’s incredible to see how people change just by changing their behavior and what you just said there about values is absolutely, I think, probably the key takeaway in any conversation. What are your values?

Clark: Why are you doing this? What’s the point of it? 

Tony: I think it lends itself to team spirit, which I tend to think is like an irrational. Intangible thing, right? 

Tony: We talk about team spirit. They had a great team spirit. You can see it when it’s happening. You can feel it when it’s happening. But it’s hard to nail it down as to what it actually is.

Tony: And you almost don’t know it till it, it happens in front of your eyes, till you’re part of this thing that just [00:10:00] manifested itself because suddenly if it was that easy to replicate, we’d all be doing it everywhere. Our teams would be going out with a better team spirit than the opponent and off we go and, we’re lighting fires under each other and everybody’s happy.

Tony: It’s such an irrational and intangible thing, but it’s the pursuit of that team spirit, I think, is where it’s at. the greatest gains are because the marginal gains that we get from fitness testing and fitness training and all of the biological and systematic tactical systems that we’re so good at these days, millions of people with no experience write about it to, great intricate levels charge them with trying to generate team spirit within a group of people who’ve got diverse set of values and cultures and ideals about how things should be done.

Tony: It’s a whole different ball game. And I love that idea of Team spirit being irrational and how do you actually make something tangible in the way that you pursue finding what this essence is for this and each group, each disparate groups, team spirit will be, that will be hewn of a different [00:11:00] cloth.

Tony: So that’s the real skill I think of the leader is to try and mobilize people to find that when each group is different. That’s why I think managers take one methodology from one place to another. There was sometimes, Unai Emery at Arsenal. wrong time, wrong place, maybe same approach just didn’t work.

Tony: Whereas now he’s suddenly found a place where actually this thing can come to life.

Rob: For me, it’s all about being unified and every, the enemy of every team is division. Like you say, it’s ultimately about the value. And I think that teams bond in purpose. You’re born into a family. You don’t have any choice. But every other group we’ve chosen, why are we together?

Rob: The clarity of that value is determined how united the team is. It’s really interesting that you brought it to values, Tony, because we began a conversation from Thomas’s curiosity of asking why, which is about, finding more clarity. And I had a conversation a little while ago about AI couple of days ago.

Rob: What I went in thinking it was going to be about technology and [00:12:00] whatever, but actually what the discussion was about every business is about results, right? So every business is powered by greed. Because ultimately the organization is shaped by efficiency, by what’s going to get the best return on investment and most, if we’re talking about big organizations, the public organizations, they’re owned by shareholders, they’re owned by pension funds, mutual funds people who never are involved in seeing the employees. 

Rob: So there’s this constant drive that every CEO has to be compromising between keeping the employees happy and getting the return for the shareholders. So when you look at AI, AI is going to scale that. And so AI is going to amplify that greed. Which means that all the things that we see, the problems in organizations are because they’re driven by that value of greed.

Rob: So then what’s going to happen is AI is going to become, because it will evolve so much faster, that’s going to amplify. So when you look at all the [00:13:00] dystopian movies of the matrix and all of these things, we’ve always ascribed them, or I’ve always interpreted them that they were about AI having a, some motive and I thought, okay, we just described human motives to them, but actually the motive AI becomes fed by who feeds it the data it gets.

Rob: And if the data we’re feeding into it is return on investment and it’s all about money, we’re never going to get the best out of people. And so there’s going to be a compromise, but ultimately we’re building a future for returning for greed, really. And I think in order to use AI to have a better future, we have to change the foundation of our society.

Rob: Because if you look at if you look at all the political systems healthcare, social care, crime. All of these things, they’re not far away from crumbling because we’ve under invested in them. Because the nature of politics is you promise one thing. You promise lower taxes, but you can’t have everything.

Rob: And lower [00:14:00] taxes. So unless we get real about, okay, this is the cost. Then we’re going to continue being lied to. And it’s going to continue to grow this gap of politics where we’re voting for caricature figures, but we’re actually there’s a subtext, there’s what we overtly say is going on. And then there’s the subtext of what happens.

Rob: And when you look at all the problems of organizations, burnout, disengagement, all of that stuff, it’s because of the friction, because we don’t want to be slaves to someone else. So it’s a long rambling comment, but I haven’t worked it out to be more precise, but I’ve, I really think the values that underpin what we do are really key.

Rob: I 

Thomas: think about that from a sporting perspective, Rob, suggest that we’re in the final frontiers of extreme capitalism just now, which I think we are. There’s a lot of cronyism that’s going on, a lot of self serving, leadership. And I suppose that our jobs at the level that we operate is trying to be the circuit breaker to that because we [00:15:00] know that the human beings strive for connection. They want autonomy, they want to be better. So I think at a local level. And so something that, that I don’t know who it was that mentioned around methodology, that they’re talking about methodology will be the future of football rather than tactical interventions.

Thomas: So for me. You look at a dressing room as a complex adaptive system. Clark, you talked about taking your regular run of the mill guy from the street and putting them into the military environment. They’re put into a complex adaptive machine. And I think leadership, 20 years ago, it was very much ivory tower, whereas now I think leadership is probably, you’re a central node in a very complex adaptive system.

Thomas: So you’re talking about shareholder value, you’re talking about employees, you’re talking about all the challenges of delivering a result for so many key stakeholders. And it’s exactly the same in the football [00:16:00] environment, I think the landscape has changed. I always talk about three things that need to be in place in order to secure a role in the right role so that there’s timing, there’s the opportunity itself, is it signed off, is it agreed, is it a process?

Thomas: And then also compatibility, because something Clark got me thinking about there with the Unai Emery story was just around the emotional contract that you sign with a club and then also the dressing room. I’ve never heard intellectual authority before, but instantly it seemed to be a connection for me with the emotional contract.

Thomas: So players generally, when you’re trying to get them to sign that emotional contract with you is, are we safe here? Can we be successful? Because players are. are inherently wired to think about survival and winning and competing in the next contract. And I suppose that almost as a form of extreme capitalism as well.

Thomas: Yet you want to, create safety. You want to help them understand all the [00:17:00] components that actually go into sustainable performance, sustainable results. And I think you’re right. Leadership stock is actually something that, that rises and falls. And perhaps Unai Emery didn’t have the required leadership stock at that moment in time at Arsenal because the timing opportunity compatibility post Wenger wasn’t in his favour.

Thomas: But then coming after another super successful stint in Spain and also at PSG, he comes in to Aston Villa. And the key thing for me now, and I’ve watched a lot of content on Unai Emery, it’s purely around conviction. Because if you can prove to players that a 45 minute video analysis session will guarantee or heighten the probability of results, Players will buy in all day long.

Thomas: Then, when you think about the evolution of a team in terms of committing to action, and hopefully it’s something we can actually maybe get into today around like the messy middle period of team development [00:18:00] where you have to fail fast, fix fast, learn fast, and probably some language that you might remember from the army about adapt, improvise, and overcome Clark.

Thomas: Once the players can actually understand, How you behave during those moments of under performance or as the team starts to go through that messy middle period. Once the players can see that this guy’s not for changing, this guy he’s got conviction on his ideas, his values, his principles, his behavior.

Thomas: We’re now start to understand and in terms of different scenarios. And then the team just starts to flourish from there. So it was A really nice segue there, Rob, in terms of what you could have brought to the table in terms of extreme capitalism and commoditized environments and players also commoditize themselves with marketing and, trying to almost elevate themselves above the club, and that probably started to happen around the David Beckham with Sir Alex Ferguson, there was a lot of tension there as he was commoditizing himself, and there’s a lot of interesting [00:19:00] things that have actually come out of a very quick conversation so far. 

Clark: Actually I think you’ve crystallized the thought that I was having about what Rob said because when you talk, Rob, about institutions beginning to crumble, that’s predominantly because people have lost faith in the intent behind how those organizations operate and when you mentioned the military Thomas, if you compare a business organization with shareholders who are purely financially driven to the military at any level that you go into in a military organization, the values are exactly the same.

Clark: If you said to a corporal or a sergeant major or a colonel, why are you doing what you do? The answer will be exactly the same, is to protect their home, their family, the country, and all sorts of other reasons that might appear on the surface to be somewhat esoteric, but actually they’re all about values that relate Doing the right thing. 

Clark: Whereas people have lost faith in organizations because greed filters down to a certain point at which it becomes obvious that we [00:20:00] can’t say to the people on the shop floor, listen guys, we need to make the shareholders a shitload of money today, so at some point the lying has to start.

Clark: We have to start trying to con the people into doing things, using the old values, like looking after your family and putting bread on the table and doing the right thing and working with your colleagues and so on. At some point, the story changes, and people have got wise to that.

Clark: Religions are the same, politics are the same, business organizations are the same. At some point, You go above a certain point and the lying starts because you couldn’t stand in the changing room and say to the Man United team, listen, guys, we need to make more money for the Glazers because they’re in a spot of bother with their business affiliation.

Clark: So we need to get them some more money. How would that work? 

Clark: The thing with people like Unai Emery or anybody that is value driven it’s from top to bottom. Not only does he push his values down, he pushes them up as well. So even when there are business decisions to be made. His core principle is yes, but the team, the fans, the community, et cetera, et [00:21:00] cetera.

Clark: And that’s when as you were saying, Rob, that, things need to change at a fundamental level. When I started working with people one on one, I stopped looking at the stuff that they know, the education that they have, the abilities that they have, or even the stories that they tell me about who they are.

Clark: I’m looking at who they are as a person, what values they hold, because that changes everything. There’s no way if you have the value of integrity, for instance, really imprinted in your very being, there’s no way that you’re just going to rip people off and lie to them because it’s incongruent.

Clark: And that’s the point with people like Emery, he’s congruent. What he does, it jives with what, why he says. And so you’ll sit in a meeting for 45 minutes and listen to something that sounds, these are kids that probably didn’t go to university most footballers, they’re not that way inclined, we’re all different, they’re much more spatially aware.

Clark: So for them, it’s all about doing stuff. So to sit down for 45 minutes, an hour, and listen to stuff, they’ve got to really believe that it’s worth doing. And as you said, he can guarantee that they will [00:22:00] get results from it. And everything that he said, or says is a mirror image of, everything else he does it’s congruent throughout and I think that’s the problem that we have now with business. You know I my I had this accident four or five months ago the insurance company just told me that they’ve cancelled the policy and they’re not going to pay out on the bike.

Clark: Now, when you look on their website, it says we will do everything we can to help you and get you through whatever situation. It’s bollocks. It’s just utter bollocks. And somebody, the person I spoke to on the telephone, I said, somebody has sat at their desk and said, no, don’t pay him. He’ll have to find the 16 grand himself.

Clark: And that really is indicative of the way that our entire society is being run these days. You have the fracas with the the post office, collusion and hiding evidence and making people gaslighting people into thinking that they’re doing the wrong thing.

Clark: These are not the values that drive a society forward. And I think it won’t be a massive revolution, but people will just start to ignore the liars and the economy. And, whilst there [00:23:00] are always going to be massive organizations trying to take our money off us, slowly people are talking one on one with people that they can see face to face and that they trust and that you can get an idea of what their values are.

Tony: It’s a really interesting dialogue. If you think back to the Chelsea game and the penalty incident the other day, clearly you got Pochettino coming out afterwards and he’s clearly a violation of, this is not how our players should behave.

Tony: You’ve got young players in the heat of the moment, perhaps not even Got any awareness of what values really are, like. Just, I want the ball, I want to take the penalty and for whatever reason, and with no awareness that there’s 50, 000 people in the stadium going, what the hell are you doing?

Tony: And another multi million at home going, who is this guy? Probably, their whole being is about wanting to be the man. And in the same moment, they’re becoming the man that nobody wants to be. It’s this disconnect of who do they want to be, versus who they’ve been in the moment is totally odds with who they should be.

Tony: And it’s brilliant [00:24:00] for all of that. That just took me back to the early part of the conversation about values clearly irritated Pochettino to the degree that he comes out and, he’s going crazy about it. But when I think of the individual and the lack of ability to regulate what they want in that moment in the interests of what is the right thing to do here there’s a lot of work to be done.

Tony: Progress being made there, by the way, I would say at Chelsea, but you could see just from that incident alone how challenging an environment is. They’re doing it with a bunch of kids. 

Clark: That’s what Thomas was saying about the messy bit in the middle and that, anybody that works in change management, that’s where they live in that messy bit.

Clark: It’s the liminal space, isn’t it, between chaos and order. That little bit in the middle is where somebody involved in change management, worth their salt, is able to take that, be comfortable with it and I remember I may have mentioned this before, actually, I remember years ago, standing on the shop floor the general manager coming down to me, and it was chaos.

Clark: We were moving assembly lines, and there [00:25:00] was some problems with the union, and the general manager said, so how’s it going? I said, yeah, it’s going well. It doesn’t look like it’s going well. I said it’s better than it was yesterday, and tomorrow it’ll be even better. And that we knew where we were going.

Clark: One of the things that I started doing a few years ago, and going back to Thomas point about critical thinking one of the first things I do when I’m talking to any customer, and predominantly at the moment it’s one on one customers, and I’m really enjoying it because to see people’s thinking change is very interesting.

Clark: One of the first things, has anybody heard of ontological coaching. Ontology is just the study of what’s real and it’s closely related to something called Epistemology which is the study of learning. So basically from those two things you get two questions What’s real and how do you know and the great thing is when those when Cole Palmer took that penalty and those two guys were arguing 

Clark: Their understanding of what was real and what was important was not matched to actual absolute reality. I often say that to customers. When you have a group of guys [00:26:00] from the shop floor, and for them things like swagger and cool they’re all real.

Clark: That’s real. And then when you ask them about it, so what makes that real? What makes that guy there cool and that guy over there, somebody that nobody wants to talk to? And once they tell you how, what’s real, and you ask them how they know, you can then start talking about values. So why is this the case, and this isn’t the case?

Clark: Once you can have that conversation, you can start talking about things like integrity. Honor, what a word, honor, for young guys. Or humility, and they don’t know what it is, in a lot of cases, because who’s teaching them? The school’s not teaching them these things anymore, nor is the church, nor are the, Politicians, none of these people have got any flipping honor or humility at all.

Clark: But once you can start having this conversation, they’re timeless principles, and guys buy into it. They absolutely love it. And then they start thinking about the Spartans, and, all these heroes of old. And it sparks something culturally within them, I think, that it just makes the [00:27:00] conversation much easier.

Clark: And you don’t then get those situations on the pitch because they refer to something within themselves that said, No, this isn’t right. This is not sportsmanlike. And, these are ideas that have come by the by recently. 

Rob: Which all goes back to Joseph Campbell and the rites of passage. Yeah, the narrative is so important.

Rob: When you look at the army that’s all built on the narrative of patriotism. This country means something. And you’re fighting for honor. And I think often that’s been misused. People have fought wars for kings or whoever which wasn’t really in the country’s interest. So the narrative is key, but what really comes to mind was Thomas was talking about I can’t remember the exact word, but can I trust you basically that the more sophisticated the environment becomes and the more high pressure, the more it’s about the foundations

Rob: I love the work of Sue Johnson. She’s done a lot of work on attachment theory. Attachment theory is basically the foundation, like how [00:28:00] our first relationship determines the imprint of how trusting we are and how our future relationships will go or how we’ll approach relationships.

Rob: But she says that every relationship is basically, she’s talking romantic relationships, but basically they’re asking three questions. 

Rob: Can I trust you? 

Rob: Can I rely on you? 

Rob: And will you be there when I need you? 

Rob: The more sophisticated we become as a society, we forget those foundations, but every one inside them is a little child asking that. Someone who’s got the swagger and a cockiness Is asking that. 

Rob: You mentioned it Clark, but I imagine for footballers, it’s very difficult to sit still because when you’re that kinesthetically intelligent like you’re grouped together by kinesthetic intelligence and that’s where your intelligence is.

Rob: And then if you’re sitting in a meeting, you’re asking, you’re being asked to be cognitively intelligent and some of them probably just don’t have it. But also when you’re in a group, it brings up the anxiety. And some people might be more comfortable in the one to one. Some people might not even be.

Rob: But in a group, you magnify that anxiety and [00:29:00] to be sat there and, maybe you’re going to be picked on, whatever. I don’t know the dynamics, but I can imagine that’s quite difficult. But yeah, what comes to mind is how important the foundations of safety and trust are in building that relationship.

Thomas: Yeah, I’m thinking of how I’ve adapted. as a leader over the years with things like that because I’m highly extroverted, quite an instinctive communicator. How might that feel if I actually unexpectedly invite a highly introverted player and I’ve actually got clips from the game or clips from training or this data that I’ve essentially armed myself or been perceived to have armed myself to push against him. 

Thomas: So over the years, I’ve now actually tried to recognize, particularly because of my interest and background of working at Insights and understanding a bit more about personality preferences. And even on a bad day, how I may actually be perceived. So on a good day, I could be very purposeful and demanding.

Thomas: On a bad day, I could be very overbearing and quite [00:30:00] dominant. Naturally speaking, we don’t want our players to see us like that unless we intentionally choose that side of our personality. So just recognizing that the introverted player is one dimensional example, helping them understand that they may need an agenda.

Thomas: This is actually what I want to speak about. Here’s the clips that I’ve actually put together, so you can actually have a look at them and you can prepare. So at least then, with our own preferences, we’re actually coming into the meeting on an even keel. And I think it’s actually a really good point that you make there, Rob, because in a collective setting, I always try not To go after someone unexpectedly, because you’re affecting the group dynamic, you’re reliant on them being able to process and respond, and there’s so many different, again, emotional contract things that you have to consider there.

Thomas: If I was to pluck a number out of my head about the average time that a group meeting took, with me, it would be 12 to 13 minutes. As soon as [00:31:00] 12 to 13 minutes have passed, I just feel like the energy in the room, the attention and it could be some of the kinesthetic things that you mentioned there.

Thomas: Also, I pride myself bene on being able to read a room because I actually have a lot of intuition. I’m always trying to, pick up on the receptors and I don’t like communicating to a room that I don’t feel I have palpable control of. So those are just some of the little values that I apply to the group setting and trying to adapt to connect to different personalities within the dressing room.

Clark: There’s an interesting tool that we’ve not mentioned in, in, in any of our conversations and I hesitate to bring it up because it’s been overused. It’s this idea of storytelling. When I go onto LinkedIn I despair sometimes when I look at some of the stuff that’s talked about around the idea of storytelling because it’s not storytelling.

Clark: And it reminds me of people, when you’re at a party and somebody said, I’m going to tell you a joke and they start the joke and you just think, oh, this person is no good with jokes. And you’re getting your [00:32:00] forced laugh prepared. But when you’re talking to a group of people, because, groupthink is a real thing.

Clark: And when a group of people are together their mentality changes to be a part of a group. A herd instinct environment. And as you said, if you pick on somebody, or you pull somebody out individually, the rest of the group will very likely turn against you, protect this member of the pack.

Clark: And I find that fascinating. And I’ve often been involved in situations where that was turning against me. Especially in the Midlands where it was very heavily unionized, because there’s a principle. at work there that I don’t subscribe to. I’ve never been a fan of unions, obviously being military background, it was never part of our ethos.

Clark: But I understand why it exists. So it’s not something I ever want to butt heads against, but it can create some friction and conflict. And when there is that difference of opinion where people are on different wavelengths, I always find that storytelling is a great thing to introduce at that 12 to 13 minute mark that you just mentioned when you’re losing everybody.

Clark: The minute [00:33:00] you say, I was in this place a few years ago and somebody walked up to me and, he had this weird red hat on or whatever. And you start, It, because it sounds unusual to hear you start to talk in a story style in the middle of a an organizational setting.

Clark: People stop and they start listening. We are wired to listen to stories. And especially if you’ve got a style that’s conversational and people buy into it, you’ve got them for another five minutes and that can extend the conversation. Very often when I’m being attacked. and people are really getting at me, I find that’s a perfect opportunity to bring out a story and it creates a cognitive dissonance. They weren’t expecting you to talk about this and all of a sudden, where’s he going with this? Obviously it better be somewhere good. It’s a rubbish story. You do, but it is a great tool.

Clark: Genuine storytelling is such a part of our a cultural heritage that we are wired to listen to them, and it’s massively underrated. It’s overrated because everybody talks about it but then what they’re talking about is not real storytelling. [00:34:00] Yeah,

Tony: it’s good. You are a storyteller, Clark, there’s no doubt about that and I would never have known from recent posts that I’ve read that that you would kick up about it so vociferously. I do enjoy reading what you write about that that’s for sure. Because of my background in the game, people that I know will say, Oh, you’ve got to tell, wherever I go with people. If I’m out being introduced to another group by a colleague or something, they’ll say, Oh, you’ve got to listen to Tony’s story about this.

Tony: Or the time when he was, Doing this back in football days, blah, blah, and it’s oh, it’s the last thing I want to hear, because my stories to me are not as engaging as apparently they are to other people. So I’ve had to learn to, manage my own I guess it’s humility.

Tony: I’m never comfortable being out front and saying, this is what I did. And so on to, to be able to manage that self consciousness with the fact that actually there’s value in the story that other people will get a lot out of has been quite tricky for me. But it’s something that I am trying to master.

Clark: Yeah, but the thing is, [00:35:00] Tony, an interesting thing about that is that we are all storytellers at heart. And this recall calls to mind a situation at a factory I worked at. About 18 months ago, where I was trying to get some of the supervisors to get more involved in the production meetings, where you have to stand at the production board and you’re looking at KPIs and you look at safety and quality and that sort of thing.

Clark: And I’m trying to get these guys more involved so that everybody is having a say. And I said, look, this is what we’re going to do. And we’re going to do it this way that it’s going to start next week. If anybody’s got any problems, come talk to me. Somebody came to my office later and he said, I can’t do that.

Clark: He can’t stand up in front of anybody. There’s no way. I and even when he is talking he is talking like this and the, really, and I thought, good, and I felt for this guy and I’m wanting to hug him or something and say, look, it’s gonna be okay. And I said, can you just tell me why?

Clark: And he gave me a little bit of a story about how growing up he’d been belittled by his stepdad and all this. I nearly cried, and I just said, Would you be comfortable saying that to the guys? And he said why would they want to hear that? I said, [00:36:00] because, 

Clark: I want you to explain to them why you don’t wanna stand up in front of ’em.

Clark: He said I’ll do it as long as I don’t have to stand up in at the front and do it. And he did and he explained it, and you could see that he got these guys he got this group of about 15 supervisors, tough blokes in a big factory. And he’d got them because he was telling something that was real for him and he stuttered and he ummed and ahhed and his style was rubbish.

Clark: But he told a better story than I could ever tell, seriously, because the emotion was there. And it changed his approach to talking to people. It took a while, eventually he got up and was talking to them. Because I said, the most important thing about your story is not the story, it’s the intent.

Clark: Why are you telling them? Why are you giving people this information? Because you want them to know about something. That matters. When Thomas stands in front of His team for 12 to 13 minutes. They know that all that all Thomas wants is for them to do well.

Clark: That shines through in everything. So it’s not really the story. It’s why you’re telling it. 

Thomas: Yeah that, that really resonates. It takes me back to the start of my pro license with the [00:37:00] Welsh FA who are a phenomenal association and they assembled this group of 20, aspiring coaches.

Thomas: And at the first session, they asked us to prepare a presentation around the four H’s. So they wanted us to have a deeper understanding and a connection to each other. So the four H’s were hero, history, heartbreak, and hope. And to this point, I’ve never been in a room that’s had more I’ve actually got shivers, actually, thinking about it.

Thomas: The things that were revealed in that room. Wow. Tears, laughter, cuddles we were essentially strangers. And from that simple framework and where it started, they were talking, you’ve probably heard similar exercises where you talk about your one word equity, so we did that as an exercise, and the first guy that stood up, his one word equity was the diplomat, so He actually stood up, [00:38:00] and I can’t actually remember his story, Clark, but because he was so diplomatic in his delivery, so eloquent, he doesn’t do any pauses or ums or ahs, it was really authentic, it was really impactful, and it made the rest of the room squirm a little bit, because from an emotional contract perspective, I actually had my four H’s prepared.

Thomas: But it was all superficial stuff, it was all stuff above the iceberg, I was just gonna dabble. And what he did is he actually just ripped everything up and said we’re going deeper, much deeper. And thankfully for me, I actually didn’t have to do the four H’s for the first, because you can only do three or four per day.

Thomas: The emotional investment was just, it was too great. You were absolutely knackered from it. But, wow the connection from people telling their story was genuinely phenomenal. The best impact I’ve ever had in a group setting. 

Clark: I think you’ve touched on something there, Thomas, [00:39:00] that I’ve been having a lot of conversations recently about this.

Clark: It’s a touchy subject and it’s the way men communicate. And I was told recently because of the way my posts are set up and the things I say on my posts. That they seem to be directed towards men and the truth of the matter is that they are and I just think that men have voluntarily, I think, abdicated their place at the table in society to a certain degree.

Clark: And it’s nobody’s fault. But one of the things that this person was talking to me about was the way men need to communicate more. And I said, but on what basis? Because men do communicate, but it’s just different to the way women communicate. And for a man to tell a woman how she should emotionally unburden herself is as wrong as a woman telling a man how he should do it.. We’ve got to a point, a lot of the things that are happening with PTSD in the military and men in general around is subject to suicide and that sort of thing. Sorry to drag the mood down a little bit, but a lot of the conversations, whilst women are certainly a part of that conversation, but it’s being driven by men [00:40:00] going profoundly deep as you’ve just said.

Clark: And going straight to the heart of the matter, and whilst some people might say that men tend not to communicate, the thing about the way men communicate is that when they do it, It’s very direct, it’s very honest and it can be it can be hard for some people to listen to, but one of the things I’ve really been pushing for recently in the work that I do is to understand that we, from a masculine perspective, we approach some of these conversations slightly differently to the way some people might expect, and that thing that you’ve just mentioned there, I think there seems to be much more of that going on these days, and I applaud it, I celebrate it massively, because it’s allowed men to start to realize, yeah we’ve got stuff to say, and we can help each other and we can do it in our own way.

Clark: And when you’re talking about teams of guys, football teams, these young men to me are the future of our society, whether they be in factories or football teams or whatever. And when you can start to encourage them to refer back to [00:41:00] some of these old values like integrity honor, and so on, and then communicate them to each other.

Clark: I think the society will all be all, including women, will all be the better for it. But those conversations are profoundly necessary today because there’s a lot of hurt going around. And when you see somebody doing that’s brave, I think. And it touches people enormously, 

Tony: right? Yeah, I love Thomas’s reflection on that.

Tony: And a recent trip to Saudi I had a multicultural group Saudis, Malaysians, Nigerians English and Indians in the group, all men. And at the start of the course, five day course, pretty intensive they had to share, stand up and share their biggest challenge as a leader. So day one, first thing they get to say publicly is what their biggest leadership challenges, little bit of vulnerability in there with the peers.

Tony: And I’m writing down, making sure that in the next five days I get to address the big challenge that they’re facing in the context of the training that we provided. Cut to day five and the last [00:42:00] thing they do is they stand up and they’ve we’ve stripped them down and rebuilt them.

Tony: As who they thought they were versus who they are as men and leaders and so forth. And they had to, with their freshest thinking redefine themselves to the group as what made them as a leader. And we’d gone into purpose, we’d gone into values and honestly, in terms of in terms of impact on me, like a group of people who I’d not known five days earlier, To hear the hardship that some of them have been through to, they’re in the same room as me 20 years after they started in shipbuilding.

Tony: They’re now in the same room as me regaling me with tales of incredible hardship and that they’ve honed who they are as men and people might honestly, I’m like Thomas, I’m getting the goosebumps feeling now I can just. The the connection is palpable that the level in trust day by day was growing, but at the end here, what makes these people who they are in a way that’s going to help them lead their organization forward is pretty phenomenal. If they can translate half of [00:43:00] that to the people that they’re charged to lead, then they’re onto a winner, I think. 

Rob: Yeah, it is all about the basics we trust when someone can explain like when we can see the humanity in someone we, that’s what we bond on.

Rob: I just want to ask you before you go about the Welsh FA thing. So you had to give a, like a, tell a story with a hero, with a history, with a heartbreak, and with a hope.

Rob: So it’s one story. Yeah, I can imagine that would be a fantastic framework. 

Thomas: It was a guy called Kevin Roberts who actually facilitated it. He’s a leadership consultant. And I believe that they’ve actually tried to do it during COVID when it was on Zoom, and it was impactful, but not as impactful as what they intended.

Thomas: But there was enough to suggest that in person, if we pitch this right, and the guys buy into it, It could have a really lasting effect on the group, and honestly, for everything else that I’ve ever been immersed in, this is always the one I try and give representation to, because of the [00:44:00] genuine impact.

Thomas: I found a quote, and Tony and I share it quite a bit, is, I hope that you win the war that you tell nobody about. 

Thomas: That really it almost connects perfectly with what that group output was, because all of these guys were interacting, coffee were speaking about her aspirations, and then everybody’s sharing, and it’s wow, without the opportunity to hear their story, I would never have guessed that you experienced that, it’s phenomenal.

Thomas: Genuinely phenomenal. 

Rob: Yeah, I can imagine the emotional contagion in that room that would really bond a group. 

Thomas: You were just so grateful that people were prepared for that thing that’s locked away somewhere in their subconscious. to actually share that with people that they felt were good people.

Thomas: I think we could go on a journey together and I’m going to take a leap of faith and just commit fully to this exercise because that’s all it was. It was an exercise and then everybody just replicated the commitment. And wow, what a feeling. 

Rob: That, [00:45:00] that goes back to Tony, you saying how difficult it is to tell your stories.

Rob: The hardest story to tell is your own. 

Tony: I’m completely comfortable in the public eye, comfortable on live TV. I’ve got no issue with being the center of attention, if you like, but that’s not the driver. And yet, for some reason, the stories, in my own mind, are not as interesting as the people who stand me up to tell them.

Tony: Maybe they are. I shouldn’t speak for other people, but it is a barrier there. There’s a barrier there that says, Oh, God, this story. I don’t even know what it means and why this person likes it so much. And I find, I find that interestingly, and the fact that I’ve said it today, probably more uncomfortable than I thought it was. 

Tony: It’s weird. I know people like football stories and they like to hear, they like to get in, into the dressing room, get visibility of things that they’re not normally privy to. I get that side of it and that I’m okay with that sort of stuff. But yeah, I don’t know what the barrier 

Rob: is.

Rob: Is it because you’re not learning anything while you’re telling it? It’s like you’ve told it so many times. 

Tony: Maybe, I don’t know. [00:46:00] It opens the therapy room.

Thomas: I’ll tell you my reflection on what I shared is that everyone has ups and downs, they have their own stories. But I also didn’t want to overplay my story to try and, find common ground with other people’s like magical stories. I just had to give the best version of my story, which I was very happy with.

Thomas: And in a 20 man group, or a 20 person group, because there was females as well, I would say my story would have ranked in the bottom five. But I am so grateful for the other 15 being better than mine because I actually learned more about them. I learned more about the challenges that other people face in their lives and how they deal with them and still manage to actually have either brilliant playing careers, really good coaching careers.

Thomas: They operate, at the top end of the game. and they function as human beings despite some really big challenges. I was just in all of these people and I’m so glad that [00:47:00] I didn’t try and force their story to, to appear to be as unequal to them because quite frankly their stories were just better than mine.

Tony: That’s interesting isn’t 

Thomas: it? 

Tony: Yeah I’ve just had a thought on that course in Saudi that I was talking about before. I railed off story after story through the week effortlessly without Given it any consideration, it was just as part of the not scripted or not planned. It would just be, oh, this is a bit irrelevant.

Tony: Oh, yeah, I remember when I did this and I would come out and regale them with a football story. That’s interesting. I’ve only just landed on that now and thinking, okay, there is a naturalness to telling those stories when the time’s right. It’s maybe other people putting me on that pedestal that, other people haven’t invited me to do it.

Tony: It’s the third person said, this guy’s got a good story for you. Maybe the audience is not ready to hear it. Yeah. 

Rob: Because the story has to come out of the context, doesn’t it? Yeah. And if there’s not the context, then the story doesn’t seem to fit.

Thomas: It’s been a really big breakthrough for me that, and actually [00:48:00] understanding the benefits of extroversion and being able to communicate instinctively, but also how that can feel for other people.

Thomas: And because I have a lot of intuition, sometimes an introvert might actually look at me with mistrusting eyes only because they’re unsure of like my authenticity, my confidence, my ability to speak so instinctively, because Sometimes you have to, I wouldn’t go as far to say as you have to bluff when you’re an instinctive communicator, but I actually talk to think.

Thomas: Where as introverts obviously think to talk and a real big breakthrough for me is just understanding tone, pitch, pace, when you ask a question, give people the space to to respond because I value just ever so marginally speed over accuracy, whereas introversion is very much accuracy over speed.

Thomas: And as you start to learn these things on your journey, you just start to become [00:49:00] aware of, how you show up and how best you can adapt for other people. 

Tony: We’re similar in that way, Thomas, in terms of the highly intuitive, my intuition is probably stronger as a preference than than my extroversion, which is probably a little more balanced.

Tony: But the, because of my ability to engage confidently I’ve often been misplaced as arrogant in, in a world where it’s so far from who I am, just confidently engaging with the group. People have made judgment and that for a long time was bothersome until I became aware that actually. If we did tone it down a bit, then that would go away, that it was a misconception, but I was creating the misconception in other people’s eyes because of the way, there was education to be had on both sides.

Tony: But the learning from me was if I can adapt or make those minor adjustments and as a consequence, greatly diminish the possibility of people perceiving me in a negative way. It’s got to be of value. And it, yeah, [00:50:00] it’s that stuff’s pretty powerful, I think. 

Rob: What immediately came to mind when you were talking about introversion, extroversion is, I wonder if that affects… Extroverts take more risks, extroverts focus more on the positive introverts are more, risk averse.

Rob: I wonder how does that play out? Does that play out in footballing styles? Are extroverts, are they prone to taking more risks? So yeah, it’s 

Tony: interesting. Because there’s different schools of thought, right? And sorry, Thomas, if you want to jump in here, but you’ve got things like Insights or Jungian typology, Myers Briggs type stuff, where you’ve got these polarities, introversion, extroversion. 

Tony: Whereas if you go into the Big Five territory and you measure it as a continuum of extroversion. It’s a purely a measure of positive emotion, and as opposed to negative, so it’s not less. Extraversion is more negative emotion, it’s just less positive emotion. So positive emotions split splits off into assertiveness. So I’m [00:51:00] quite happy to take the lead. Not only am I happy to take the lead, I want to take the lead. It’s extremes. I am the boss and you’ll do what I say and you’ll do it now. Versus highly enthusiastic, highly sociable, highly charismatic.

Tony: Arrogant, maybe, whoa, back off a little bit, tone it down. So you’ve got positive emotion. So energized by being that versus not energized by being that versus energized by being the opposite of those things, being reserved, being thoughtful, being reflective. So when that plays out for me, and it’s when you bring these dimensions together.

Tony: So if you think of. Neuroticism, which I don’t like the term of, is a measure of negative emotion. At one end of the spectrum, you’ve got highly anxious, highly withdrawn, highly volatile. So if you get angry and irritated at really small things quickly, in one of the aspects of neuroticism, you score quite high.

Tony: But it someone like me who stays pretty calm under all sorts of, under if I think about the pressure of being asked on live tv, whether you [00:52:00] should be sacked. I’ve got an ability to stay calm and composed and thoughtful and give a healthy response into that sort of setting.

Tony: I score quite low on the neuroticism, so very low on the neuroticism scale. So if you think about that as a team that you’re working with, footballer or not and there are highly introverted players who are very good footballers. It’s recognizing that because they’re involved in groups activity just about every day that they’re in situ at the football club. I think if the leader Isn’t aware of how much time they need to recover and recharge. And he’s able to have those conversations with them. Look, I know that for the next couple of hours, we’re going to go into these group workshop.

Tony: This is going to be a bit testing for you. By the way, we’ll give you a little bit of, take some time out or why don’t you and Johnny go off and do some thinking about this, that, and the other and come back with some ideas, whatever it might be it becomes quite relevant. So the one size fits all.

Tony: You run your football program this way. I think it just comes with the understanding that the energy consumption is different for every [00:53:00] player based on where they are on these. on these scales on these spectrums. So for the same week of work, and it’s the same physically, if you’re a really explosive sprinter, you don’t need as much explosive sprint training as someone that’s a plodder.

Tony: If you’re a marathon runner, you can do as much sprint training as you like. You’re not going to blow anything anytime soon, because you just don’t have the power to, Break something. Whereas you over train a switch player, you’re going to break them quicker. So it’s the same thing with the mind.

Tony: I think that you can, you expose people to the same amount of inputs. At the same level of intensity, some of them are going to mentally frazzle quicker and need longer to recover than some of the others. That’s the way I look at it. 

Thomas: I’m so glad that you actually did that because it actually helped clear my thinking.

Thomas: And probably the only thing I can actually add to Rob’s question with your summary there, Tony, is that I think players are actually Probably quite instinctively good at understanding how to re energize themselves. So you’ll see the introverts [00:54:00] maybe sitting together at lunch or stretching together before the warm up.

Thomas: They’ll generally have different people for different things to actually help them feel more secure, to feel more confident, to re energize themselves. Who do they actually travel with in the car to training? A highly introverted person might travel alone because he actually needs that re calibration time before he picks the kids up from school and then he’s back in a chaotic environment.

Thomas: So I think players are actually very good at instinctively understanding what they need to be surrounded by and how they need to Organize the routine to feel energized, confident, and ready to take risks as a 

Tony: footballer. Yeah, 100%. I think, Thomas, were we talking about this last week when I was saying, I don’t know if it was you or whether it was my Australian colleague about recognizing, because I coach a women’s team, so on the big five dimensions women are typically higher in neuroticism, And higher in agreeableness than [00:55:00] men per capita.

Tony: Doesn’t mean there aren’t extremes of that, but as a general population they score higher on those dimensions. So as that’s been playing out for me and as my awareness and insights into this grows, I can see how a highly assertive player on the pitch who can be quite destructive in coming out and making demands and being quite pointed and blunt in the messaging that’s going out to the team can have a real adverse effect on. A larger group of people than would otherwise. It even be worth bothering about. So it’s helped me shape my narrative as to constantly reinforcing the need for positive dialogue which I support anyway.

Tony: I always think it’s better to praise than it is to knock people down. But the implication is if it was allowed to go like that, you get the buildup of resentment over time you get. So you’re allowing small little cracks to, to fester over time and. It can become quite disjointed. 

Tony: It’s really interesting to see how that plays out. [00:56:00] And the other thing is under pressure where this team of people, again, looking at the sort of negative emotion scale the impact of negative events, goals conceded, for example can play on their psyche for a good chunk of time after, afterwards.

Tony: So for that next 10, 15 minutes of the game, you might have conceded a goal, but you might concede two more because heads have gone and it’s not it’s, but you can use terms like mindset or mental strength and all of that stuff is relevant resilience. But resiliency sits at the opposite end of neuroticism. 

Tony: So it’s actually a natural trait. You’re either naturally resilient and optimistic. So you bounce back after a setback or it’s actually hurting you right now. There’s fears kicked in. There’s an anxiety kicked in. There’s a, Oh, I don’t want to show myself again. I can’t.

Tony: So there’s all sorts of innate, Behaviors are starting to manifest on the back of conceding a goal and then armed with a high degree of assertiveness that starts coming out as, you’re not doing your job or this, you get this double whammy of people that [00:57:00] are anxious and now they’re getting yelled at and they don’t like, they don’t like that, perhaps they’re a bit more introverted and, can someone please come and help me?

Tony: So it’s it’s fascinating to think about the game in those types of dimensions. 

Thomas: Also the two dimensions that you spoke about in terms of the men’s game and the women’s game, and it might not be too worthwhile going into too much of this because I think Clark can bring his voice onto this as well, because you can see his passion earlier but this thing around like motivational interviewing, having like affirmations and other people in terms of the feedback that we give as coaches, helping people realize the good in themselves.

Thomas: And I think counselors. And professionals that deal with addicts, they actually use this type of affirmation a lot because ultimately, if all the addict wants to do is to please the counselor, as an example, then it’s quite a kind of futile motivation to be built on. So it’s this constant affirming and helping people that they’ve actually got it [00:58:00] within themselves.

Thomas: And I suppose it creates stronger, more robust, more resilient individuals and people that are actually doing it for themselves. In a footballing context, when the proverbial shit hits the fan, everyone instinctively actually starts to look Yes, there’ll be external interventions, and there’ll be different things that people are doing, but just that internal conviction that we’ve actually got this.

Thomas: We actually want to control the energy of the team. And that’s something, again, we have strong feeling preference. We can feel when the momentum of a game is starting to run away from us because actually, the identity of the team is quite palpable. But a more introverted leader would be just purely thinking What is actually happening within the game?

Thomas: And by the way, there’s no right or wrong. You either feel the game or you think it in your head, and you’ll have different interventions accordingly. But I think that affirmation, helping people actually look within themselves for feedback and positive reinforcement [00:59:00] and conviction really builds that robustness in them.

Tony: Yeah. Funny on the weekend I had to address it on the weekend because we were clearly the better team I think. Leading 2 0, conceded two late goals and had to go into extra time in the cup, quarterfinal, whatever it was. And it needed to be re established, but all of those good characteristics that if we don’t show them, we run the risk of throwing this one away.

Tony: Whereas if we’re going to get, it wasn’t about the tactics or it was about the mentality and about what works when we’re doing these things well, saying the right things. 

Rob: It’s all about managing energy, isn’t it? So physically like you eat the right stuff, you get the right sleep.

Rob: I hadn’t realized before how much is, yeah how much, how we’ve been spoken to, how our preferences, if you’re someone who’s neurotic, if you’re someone who’s introverted, is someone who’s, those, That halftime talk can lower you down. You, and you go out with less psychological energy. 

Rob: It’s all a counterbalance [01:00:00] that we want the affirmation, but we also need the challenge. And when you’re looking at a high performing team, it’s when they hold themselves accountable. And everyone is challenged and held accountable for what they’re, for what they’re doing. But yeah, the balance to that is the amount of trust and understanding we have of each other.

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