9 Qualities To Look For In Your Next Leader And NFL Head Coach

The Dallas Cowboys fired head coach Wade Phillips today.  While it is never entirely the coach’s fault when a team begins 1-7, the responsibility of poor performance will always fall upon the leader.

The search for a permanent coach is underway.  What type of leader should owner Jerry Jones look for?  For a look into this individual, let’s look at the qualities of the NFL’s most iconic head coach, Vince Lombardi of the Green Bay Packers.

In Adam Scheftler’s book The Class Of Football, he provides excerpts of famous Hall of Fame speeches by those being inducted into that select group of athletes.  Almost each individual who played for Lombardi mentioned him by name.  Their comments provide a composite of the type of leader that Jones should seek.

  1. Legacy – “His imprint also is on the men he coached.  They speak about him as if they can still hear him, as if they never met anybody like him.” – Scheftler
  2. Commitment – “I would say that the quality of each man’s life is in full measure of that man’s personal commitment to excellence and to victory.” – Lombardi
  3. Admiration – “Vince Lombardi, a man I truly loved and admired.” – Willie Davis
  4. Results – “He made winners out of his players and losers out of his opponents.” – Wellington Mara
  5. Teacher – “He was an exceptional teacher and an inspirational leader.  He taught us the meaning of commitment, unselfishness, purpose, pride, and an unrelenting quest for excellence.” – Bart Starr
  6. Excellence – “This man was the maximum, for a lack of a better adjective to describe him, as a football coach.” – Forrest Gregg
  7. Loyalty – “Coach Lombardi had the nerve to draft me number one…And I said I have to repay this man for having the nerve to draft me number one.” – Herb Adderley
  8. Reliance – “But the rest of us, including Nitschke, needed Lombardi.  Taylor needed him, Starr needed him, and above all, Hornung needed him.” – Paul Hornung
  9. Unity – “Coach Lombardi used to say as a player you have only three things to worry about: religion, family, and the Green Bay Packers – not necessarily in that order.” – Henry Jordan Jr.

Jordan went on to say “Coach Lombardi, thank you for promoting an environment that allowed my dad  to maximize and hone his God-given skills and then on Sundays, letting him have the stage to show those gifts to the world.”

So, I ask you – who could Jerry Jones hire that would leave a legacy, have commitment, admiration, results, excellence, loyalty, reliance, unity, and is a great teacher?  The answer is Bill Cowher.

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About Brian Dodd on Leadership

I am a church stewardship and leadership consultant for INJOY Stewardship Solutions. This blog combines my personal passions of church, sports, pop culture and family into a single leadership resource. I trust your time on this site will create conversations and add value to your life.

6 Responses to “9 Qualities To Look For In Your Next Leader And NFL Head Coach”

  1. Jesus is our leader, you dirtbag*, and he inspires all of those qualities. Pastors are supposed to be shepherds of their flock, maybe not in the pulpit, but elsewhere. Our current pastor’s ego is so huge, it’s a wonder he can make it in the door. He’s good at his ‘job’, but it doesn’t exactly inspire much of anything or anyone else.
    *just a little anti-Christ humor -hahaha.

    • K.D.,

      I can’t tell you how glad I am that you commented. A few thoughts:

      Having a pastor you don’t enjoy as a leader is tough. Been there. I would recommend you find a pastor you can support.
      Another reason I hope everyone finds a good church is because sooner or later, we will all encounter something in our lives that overwhelms us. It’s necessary to have a strong biblical foundation and leadership when that time arrives.
      Finally, I’m glad you commented on this post in particular. Many posts I write are applicable to all walks of life – sports teams, families, office environments, and churches. So I hope you keep reading them all and commenting.

      Once again, thank you so much for commenting. It means a lot and I hope you have a great evening.


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    […] 11/09/2010 by Brian Dodd on Leadership 5 Comments […]

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