Sports & business have many parallels; they are team environments, they have high performance goals, they are competitive and, to be the best, you need to be a great leader.
On this week’s Leadership Launchpad Project podcast, Assistant Coach of the Canadian Women’s Hockey Team, Kori Cheverie, joined us to talk about her journey and leadership lessons from winning an Olympic Gold Medal at the 2022 Winter Olympics in Beijing. You can find the interview on Apple, Spotify, Stitcher, Amazon Music, Google Podcasts and more.
I wanted to highlight 3 leadership lessons that we can apply to our businesses that lead to Olympic gold performance.
- Starting with a Growth Mindset. Kori mentions during the podcast that they kicked off the training camps with a message on iteration. Continuous improvement & growth mindset start with the belief that nothing is perfect and we can always take feedback, improve and try again.
Takeaways: How are you applying growth mindset principles to your business? How can you learn, receive feedback and iterate more? Do you hear or use the phrase “that’s the way we’ve always done it” or are you evolving? How can you foster a more psychologically safe environment to ensure the most accurate feedback is given/received? How can you foster an environment where your team learns, communicates and innovates on processes?
- Creating an Environment for Trust, Connection & Empowerment. Due to COVID restrictions, Team Canada wasn’t able to have all of the athletes practice on the ice at the same time. They were limited to smaller groups. How did the leaders adapt? They created small teams that stayed, travelled and practised together. They went even further and empowered those teams to lean into self-awareness and choose what skills/drills they wanted to work on. This engaged their athletes in their development and also built trust & connection both within the athletes, who are competing against each other for roster spots, and with the coaches. Even with athletes who are in direct competition with each other, they were able to foster trust & connection. It starts with deliberate actions from a 2.0 Leadership Mindset.
Takeaways: How can you foster more moments of connection within your team? How can you give your team more opportunities to be empowered in their work and in their growth? How can you create an environment where the ultimate goal of your business is the priority?
- Finding Opportunity in Disruption. Kori was unable to travel to Beijing because of the COVID testing regulations and it could have shut her down completely. But Kori chose the mindset of finding an opportunity and she found the gold-lining in this disruption. Kori changed her sleep schedule to fit being awake when her team was, she watched all of the games live and did her standard work of video scouting/coaching. But that’s not all. She went above and beyond. She found opportunities to have 1 on 1 coaching calls with her team to not only support them with strategic/technical/tactical hockey coaching but also she leaned into supporting her team with their mindsets, emotions and processing the incredible stress of performing at the highest level in the highest pressure moments. Out of her inability to travel with the team, Kori created a role that was more valuable and more impactful than what she would have done if she would have been in China. That’s the 2.0 Leadership Mindset in action.
Takeaways: How can you take advantage of this disruption; of the remote/hybrid work, of new technology, of Gen Z coming into the workplace? How can you evolve faster or differently than your competitors to gain an advantage? What is your gold-lining to all of this disruption?
There were so many more incredible lessons to learn from Kori’s experience in leading Canada to an Olympic gold so definitely check out the interview! Congratulations to Kori and Team Canada for being incredible leaders, being incredibly resilient and teaching us how we can bring Olympic Gold performance to our businesses.
How are you going to apply these 2.0 Leadership Mindset lessons to your business?
Click here for the best, research-backed, 2.0 Leadership Mindset strategies that will build you into a high-impact leader who turns their teams into happy high performers that achieve their goals. Rather than traditional leadership coaching, Elite High Performance blends neuroscience, mindset coaching, high-performance leadership strategies with cutting-edge technology & data to provide a clear path to building a high-performing team – or to turn around an under-performing team. It’s the same way professional sports teams combine high-performance coaching, technology and analytics to build a winning sports team.
– Coach Rob