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Back You are here: Home Sports Rugby Kwa Zulu Natal Rugby: Sharks Share Team Culture with Schools
Thursday, 07 March 2013 11:52

Rugby: Sharks Share Team Culture with Schools

Pupils and coaches from top rugby playing schools in KwaZulu-Natal got a rare inside perspective on the one of the main ingredients behind The Sharks success when the Super Rugby team shared it's philosophy on the importance of team culture with the schoolboys and their coaches.



ssssThe special Discovery SharkSmart workshop, which was presented by The Sharks coach John Plumtree, skipper Keegan Daniel and biokineticist Jimmy Wright was attended by senior players and coaches from twelve schools in the province.

"How often have you seen a team with all the star players, but they battle to put results on the board consistently? We believe the answer to that problem lies in the team culture, and it is something that we have put a lot of effort into this past year," said Plumtree.

Plumtree tasked Wright with the job of researching team culture trends, and leading the squad through establishing the foundations of their team culture for the current season.

Daniel pointed to a number of key elements that underpinned their team culture, principally trust, respect, a shared vision, humility, faith and gratitude.

"You can't push a rope, you have to pull it," said Daniel, describing the need for a squad's senior players and leaders to set a constant example. "In our team we try to make every player a leader," he added.

"We want to leave a legacy," said Daniel. "Our legacy will be a healthy culture where quality people produce quality performances."

He said the team went to great lengths to make sure the younger players felt included at all levels of the teams activities, and that their perspective of the team extended to every person who worked at the union, and to every single fan.

Under coach Plumtree the squad has a flat structure with easy access to the senior players and management, and a unique system of "umbrella groups" that allow players an easily accessible channel through which to air their views.

"You need to live you culture," Daniel told the school teams. He said that consistently successful teams had managed to create a spirit within the team where the players were willing to go the extra mile for each other week after week.

Plumtree wished the schools well for the impending season, and urged them to focus on creating a strong, healthy culture in their schools teams that will be part of the legacy they leave behind.

"The Discovery SharkSmart programme aims to brings the passion and expertise to within the reach of high schools in KwaZulu-Natal, allowing them to follow global best practices and learn from one of the most successful franchises in world rugby," said Discovery SharkSmart director Dr. Glen Hagemann.

"This workshop gave these schoolboys and their coaches a rare glimpse at what really makes a top team tick, and proved to be an invaluable experience for the boys and their coaches," he added.

The workshop was attended by pupils and coaches from Crawford College North Coast, DHS, Glenwood High School, Hillcrest High School, Kingsway High School, Kloof High School, Northwood School, Port Natal Skool, South City College, Treverton College, Weston Agricultural College and Westville Boys High School.

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