Winning is everything... or is it?

  Brendan Venter (right) with   Allister Coetzee

Brendan Venter (right) with Allister Coetzee

Brendan Venter, former Springbok centre and Director of rugby at Saracens between 2009-2011 has a different take on the traditional coaches view that "winning is everything".

In an article in the Daily Telegraph's Sports Section on 17 May Daniel Schofield writes... "rather than measuring his legacy in trophies Venter says his true impact is felt on how his philosophy of... 'treating people unbelievably well' has endured at Saracens. Venter continues... "My goal was never to come in and win something. People never understand that. If we made unbelievable friends, treated each other well and have been happy, then we have won and achieved. I said to the Sarries boys right at the beginning, if the object was winning a trophy, do you realise you have to give it back? You don't even get to keep it! So, that can't be the target. It has to be the memory of winning the cup, it has to be the friendships that are formed in the process. That is the object."

Relating this to the business world 'winning' can be seen as 'achieving targets.' And it's even tougher here because there isn't even a trophy to give back! Only a bigger target to achieve the following year. The target becomes the Holy Grail, which disappears immediately it has been achieved... with a bigger mountain to climb the following year. Taking on Venter's philosophy... if the journey becomes the goal and it is inspiring and fulfilling, as it has been shown to be for Saracens, then achieving success becomes more meaningful and sustainable.

Photograph courtesy of Brendan Venter.

Jayne Caudle