When good fails to turn into great. When the sum of the parts isn’t
greater than the whole. When a talented senior management team never
quiet reaches the heights expected. Then people look at the leader.
What’s missing? It’s the Don Revie effect. What they might have and
should have been.
Revie’s psychological flaw was his insecurity reflected In his
numerous and well documented superstitions. The legendary Leeds
United boss believed the images of bird brought bad luck; wore a
‘lucky’ mohair suit for games, even when the trousers became so
threadbare his players were embarrassed to point out they could see
his underwear; and took the exact same route to Elland Road on
matchdays, refusing to return home if he had forgotten anything.Things
were so bad that he once summoned a gypsy to Elland Road to remove a
curse that he believed had been placed on the ground to stop his side winning.
To be intensely pragmatic , to be meticulous in your preparation and
planning, as Revie was, and yet be not convinced that you control your
own fate. Maybe the fact of being so though in planning encourages the
belief that the only thing that could go wrong would be down to bad
luck. The believe that if you don’t succeed it was not down to poor
planing, a lack of expertise or effort but to sheer bad luck or the
conspiracy against you.
With other leaders their flaw maybe their temperament those angry
outburst in response to frustration and stress. In others a messiah
complex where they believe they are on a morale crusade to save the
world so there actions and decisions are not open to rational debate.
In some cases despite being very successful some leaders flaw is that
they don’t believe they deserve their success.
But in all cases these flaws eventually rub off on their teams. If
the leader is brilliant but flawed the team built in their image will
Blair Mcpherson former Director, author and blogger www.blairmcpherson.co.uk