Cody’s Cracked the Talent Management Code
I am constantly amazed at what ordinary people can achieve in sport. You can’t help but admire the speed, skill and feats of endurance on display at the Olympics in Rio. The athletes, their coaches and support teams have to manage their talent to peak once in 4 years, not an easy thing to achieve. Imagine the amount of mental preparation that has to go in, never mind the physical fitness aspect.
Closer to home, when I was watching the hurling semi-finals last weekend, I recalled listening to Brian Cody the Kilkenny Manager speak at the Sales Institute in June. I was spellbound listening to a man that possibly is one of the greatest sporting coaches Ireland has ever produced. What he has achieved with several teams of amateur players is absolutely outstanding.
Build a Successful Foundation
As Brian spoke on the day, a thought came to me that Brian Cody had definitely cracked the Talent Management code. He spoke from the heart, it was not overly rehearsed, and he covered almost every aspect of how they approached the all-Ireland hurling championship year on year.
He explained that at the start of his time as Kilkenny Manager he realised that if he was to be successful he would need to be close to all the groups of people that he depended on. He needed all of the hurling clubs and county boards on his side aiming for the same goal. And of course he would need the players to follow him to the letter. He spent 2-3 years working on these aspects to ensure that he was building a foundation for enduring success.
He then worked on a simple formula of continuous improvement. A formula that has allowed him to consistently nurture and get the best from his team of players.
When Kilkenny won a semi-final, Brian would bring his players back to the training field and demand more. He would demand higher intensity, higher standards, continuous improvement because he reasoned that what had won the semi-final would not win the final. Small improvements in sharpness, fitness, tactics on the day would all mean the difference between success and coming second. The players responded to this because he was challenging them in a positive way, challenging them mentally, physically and asking them to be better players, better people.
What he spoke about and described was so simple, yet everyone in the room knew that very few people and teams consistently put together such a package. Brian has managed the talent available to him and got the very best out of it.
Run a Champion Business
I think there are many things to take away from the success Brian has achieved and to apply it to our teams in business. Nurturing talent, challenging people and setting high standards to continuously improve is a goal that every business should have.
Ask yourself this – are you leading the way as a Brian Cody manager? Are you challenging your team in the right way? Is your team performing to its highest potential?
Planning, preparation and continuous nurturing can be the difference between success and failure. It can be the difference between having a mediocre team vs a team of champions.
I think we only have to look at Brian Cody and his players for inspiration in how to achieve it, and how to crack the Talent Management Code.