5 things we learned from ‘Leaders Questions with Stuart Lancaster’ – Off The Ball

Posted: October 15, 2019 at 11:48 pm


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Returning for a second series, the first episode of 'Leaders Questions with Stuart Lancaster', in association with GOAL Global, threw up a number of fascinating insights into the Leinster coach's methods and approach to life and rugby.

Five things we learned from 'Leaders Questions with Stuart Lancaster'

1 - Stuart Lancaster has 'more free time than you'd think'

"I'm in Dublin, my family are in Leeds and I'm on my own," revealed Stuart Lancaster with reference to his personal time, "I've got evenings on my own."

Scarcely sitting around wasting time, however, Stuart Lancaster discussed how important this free-time was in allowing him to brush up on his leadership techniques, and devise ways of passing these skills onto his players.

"I've got the time and the capacity and certainly see the job as partly educating the players from a rugby and tactical point of view," he stated, "but also partly from a leadership point of view."

Enabling success on and off the pitch for his players, the Leinster coach believes his players have demonstrated a willingness to learn.

2 - Man-management is a vital component of Leinster's success

Calling on a recent incident for the purposes of demonstrating the nature of his work with Leinster, Stuart Lancaster discussed the importance of pushing individuals for the good of the collective.

"I constantly have to remind myself to have the small conversations with players," he explained.

"There was one with a player who has just fought his way into the first-team and I felt he wasn't quite believing in himself.

"So, I pulled him to one side and we had a conversation a few weeks ago and he played much, much better over the last two weeks.

"He was now asking for the ball, showing more confidence in his own ability."

3 - The importance of the Leinster 'family'

Suffering the devastating loss of his father last year, Lancaster revealed how touched he was by the support he and his family received from those he works alongside at Leinster.

Paying scant heed to the fact that the funeral fell during the middle of a "rugby week," Lancaster discussed how numerous members of the staff (playing and management) made the journey from Dublin to "a tiny little village" in Cumbria so they could show their support.

You can read more of that story from Lancaster's 'Leaders Questions' here.

4 - Failure matters!

Suffering what may well have been a detrimental end to his coaching career with the England national side, Stuart Lancaster is acutely aware that failure is not necessarily an end in and of itself.

"In American football, they tend to go for coaches who've failed before," he outlined with particular reference to the New England Patriots' Bill Belichick.

Notably failing with the Cleveland Browns before going on to dominate American football with the Patriots, Lancaster rallied against the prevailing feeling toward failure closer to home.

"In Europe," he argued, "it seems to be that you're out the door and you let the next person in."

5 - Dealing with Leinster's 'Millennials'

Conscious of the difference in age that separates him from his younger players at Leinster, Stuart Lancaster discussed the challenges he faces in translating his messages in a manner that will remain effective.

"The millennials I coach are brilliant," he noted with regards to his young Leinster talents, "but how they consume material has changed."

Citing the importance of Whatsapp in communicating with his players, Lancaster discussed how the age-profile of his own children (17 & 18-years old) helped him immensely in adjusting to this.

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5 things we learned from 'Leaders Questions with Stuart Lancaster' - Off The Ball

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October 15th, 2019 at 11:48 pm

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