Finding Leadership, Pt. 1

This week’s podcast is not a conversation, but a rumination.

Before David Plummer took home the gold and bronze medals as a member of the U.S. Swim Team at the 2016 Olympic games, he was an aspiring Olympian who three times had failed to make the cut at the Olympic Trials.  Now retired from swimming and working as a leadership consultant, David reflects on his time as an athlete, the overwhelming pressure to race fast and to win, and the transformational leader who turned his perspective, and his career, on its head.

“It’s interesting reflecting back on the early days when you were in sport, especially having young kids and seeing them go through this process.  You start to see what people celebrate, and in sport, it’s rarely getting things right.  It’s very outcome focused.  If I’m taking my kid to soccer practice, the parents aren’t cheering when they see somebody kick the ball correctly, or execute a pass.  They cheer when it bounces off the back of a kid’s head and goes through the goal.  That’s what we’re really focused on.”

– David Plummer

Episode Highlights:

– Leadership in sport

– Positive leadership

– Focusing on process over outcomes

– The role of leaders in athlete development

– Transactional versus transformational leadership

– Chasing feedback

– Values and work ethic

– Leadership and motivation

– The sport/life balance

– Leadership and team culture

– The value of controllables

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