The Captain’s Conundrum

This past weekend saw me returning to Ultimate after a three month break due to an ankle injury that I suffered whilst playing in a tournament. I was making my return in two leagues, an indoor social league and our division 1 outdoor league.

Anyone who has recovered form an injury in any sport can appreciate the anticipation as you slowly rebuild back to a point where you’re game-ready. There’s a sense of excitement, a renewal of goals and a realisation that, although your game has been put on hold for a while, it is time to get back into it and continue moving forward as a player.

Avoid Trying To Clone Yourself

If I learned one thing about leadership in the past 5 years it is to avoid trying to clone myself. Although I may be great (or think I am) at many aspects of the game, like defense, speed, agility, field sense, anticipating plays developing, I am by no means perfect. My throws are not technical, my confidence breaks down, I lose intensity and motivation when it’s cold, and I can rarely identify what the other team’s defensive and offensive strategies are, to name but a few of my weaknesses. Yet, erroneously, when I have been in a leadership role in the past, I have, inadvertently tried to create a team of “me’s”. I recently read an article on management tips and appreciated the one entitled avoid trying to clone yourself as a perfect summary of this type of leadership error.