HERE IT IS

Inside Sport - - INSIDER - BY PAULRO OS, VIKING ,†£Š.ŠŠ – JC

Paul Roos likes to say that an or­gan­i­sa­tion’s cul­ture isn’t what’s writ­ten on posters on the wall. There are few coaches who speak more au­thor­i­ta­tively on the sub­ject, hav­ing built the team ethos at the Syd­ney Swans, and achieved a near turn­around with the for­merly hap­less Mel­bourne Demons.

Truly, a bet­ter sense of cul­ture – how a team builds it, what keeps it going – is found in these pages. Af­ter a tremen­dous play­ing ca­reer with the Swans and Fitzroy, Roos sat down and wrote 25 thoughts he had on the way he was coached. These be­came the foun­da­tional prin­ci­ples for the way he went about his work on the side­line.

A lot of what Roos and the Swans helped to usher in: lead­er­ship groups, peer re­views, a near-ob­ses­sive devotion to “be­hav­iours”, be­came stan­dard op­er­at­ing prac­tice across the AFL, and much of Aus­tralian sport. In the process, the model of the dic­ta­tor-coach rant­ing and rul­ing by force of per­son­al­ity can be seen to go by the way­side; in its place, there’s a vaguely new-age re­la­tion­ship man­age­ment be­tween the coach-as-guru and his well-paid play­ers. In this light, win­ning isn’t ev­ery­thing, be­cause there’s so much more – as Roos notes in point no.4 of the 25, “Never lose sight of the fact it is a game of foot­ball.”

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