Lessons learned from the world of rugby

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Lessons learned from the world of rugby


On Wednesday 16 August ESV hosted clients and guests from the property and funds management industry at a boardroom lunch to celebrate Bledisloe Cup and ESV’s Community Partnership with Randwick Rugby.  Guests had  the pleasure of listening to rugby legends Bob Dwyer and Owen Finegan speak of the highlights of their sporting careers, highlighting the parallels with the business world.

Australian international rugby union player, Owen Fingean shared the highlights of his sports and business careers, including winning a Rugby World Cup, a Lions Series, two Super 12 trophies, numerous Bledisloe victories and voted Wallaby Player of the Year. In 2005, Owen was named in the "Wallaby Team of the Decade".

Owen gained much of his valuable skills with the help of his Brumbies and World Cup Coach Rod Macqueen. Rod emphasised that his team were “assets rather than rugby players”. Every year Rod presented a new vision for his team, such as ‘taking on the world’ and ‘being one step ahead’, to maintain the player’s personal growth and motivation. The importance of family values and community was also valued in Brumbies, which was initiated by Rod.

Bob Dwyer was another one of Owen’s coaches who inspired his long running success. In 2002 Bob lifted the NSW Waratahs to their first-ever Super 12 championship play-off.  At the lunch Bob talked about the importance of intuition on the fast-paced rugby field. He commended Owen for being a  player who allowed his intuition to play a major role in his action on the field.

As Bob continued it became clear that there were three qualities he held dearest during his coaching career: teamwork, leadership and opportunity were all driving forces of the success of his teams. Rugby is not a solo game, and to try and complete a play or move forward to success without your team is impossible. Bob elaborated, "you demand the assistance of your teammates and they demand yours, it is up to everyone on the field to create a cohesive structure, turning it into a winning success."

According to Bob it is useless fixating on the scoreboard, just do your job properly and the results will show, to be able to provide consistent and reputable work will go further than a one-off win; much like in the world of business.

Positive and accurate leadership was also crucial to Bob and he indicated no  organisation can be successful without it. Indecisive management will lead to indecisive players, minimising their ability to trust their intuition as much as Owen did during his winning series.

 While leadership and teamwork were highly important to Bob in his career progression, he was eager to ensure that players and prospective players had opportunities. Bob wanted to provide an opportunity for every person to play, and then play a little better. This desire led to his work with our community partners, Randwick Rugby Club. Their connection with local universities, has developed a young club, building from the bottom to create strong teams throughout the club. ESV is very proud of its association with Randwick Rugby as Community Partners.

It was a privilege to hear from Bob and Owen and their insights into developing a successful sporting career provided inspiration and lessons to be applied both on and off the field.

If you are interested in attending any of our future events, please contact us at events@esvgroup.com.au, or to find out more about the work we do with property and funds management clients contact us or your ESV engagement partner on 02 9283 1666.