A tale of two different leaders

In case you have missed it the Golf Ryder Cup has just finished.

It is a regular competition among the best male players in the US competing against the pros from Europe.

Europe won convincingly.

There is no doubt that the European golfers out-played their opponents.

But perhaps there is a deeper lesson for the failure of the US team.

One the one hand you have American Tom Watson.

Tom is an 8 time major winner.

A great player in his own right.

But as team leader his style was described as aloof, distant and uncommunicative.

Even one of his senior players, Phil Mickleson said at a press conference after the event:

‘Neither I nor any of the other American players had been consulted in any of the decision-making.’

One the other side you have Irishman, Paul McGinley.

Paul was never a great player– far from it.

But he may be a great team leader.

Here are his comments after the event:

“I’m very proud of every one of these players. I couldn’t have asked for an ounce more from them.

I’ve been involved in so many Ryder Cups and seen mistakes we’ve made.

“I’ve changed things a bit, bringing in the fifth vice-captain has been a factor in helping to prepare the guys, especially in the afternoon sessions, but we have had 12 players who have been awesome.”

Paul’s leadership style as evidenced in this quote was described by the European team as inclusive, collaborative and inspirational.

It seems to me that the leaders of the future who want to get the best out of their team would do well to follow the example of Paul McGinley and his team.

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