My reflections on Wednesday’s Performance Hub event at Wembley Stadium

Performance Hub events like Wednesday’s day at Wembley Stadium are a big part of the Leading Edge and Performance Edge calendar. Months of planning for a sharing day that goes by so very quickly!  Our theme for this event was ‘How do we fast track future talent?’

As I reflect on Wednesday and review the great posts that some of the participants have already shared on LinkedIn, a word that has bubbled through for me is Ego.

The Risk of Ego.

Ian Leman (Performance Edge) talked about the value of us all ‘suspending judgement’ in understanding the expectations of our talented individuals.  Steve Guinan (The FA) pointed out the path to coaching success sees international football players moving into coaching in much lower clubs to craft their skills.  Simon Walker (Kubrick Group) named the unfillable role where we are seeking ‘the unicorn candidate’, potentially an ego driven response – ‘it’s impossible to hire for this complex role in my unique team’.  Carlton Cole (West Ham Utd Academy Coach) jokingly shared the reality of trying to engage 16 year old youth players who don’t even REMEMBER ‘who you used to be’.

There is no place in the War for Talent for ego and tenure-based expertise.

Humility and Learning.

The 50+ participants included Heads of Talent, Group HR Directors, International rugby and football players, Headteachers, a Principal Ballet dancer, Talent specialists from ECB, military leaders….

What they have in common is a passionate interest in exploring and understanding different experiences and perspectives, in service of translating learning into their own organisation. You might imagine that this could become a very self-serving environment.. but the humility and genuine interest everyone shares in hearing from individuals from different environments is inspiring.   (The sense of imposter syndrome was very real – evidenced when Emile Heskey was asked by another participant if he’d enjoyed the tour of Wembley Stadium!  (‘Oh, you’re that Emile!’) )

The opportunity to explore avenues in conversation, be vulnerable about the challenges faced and ask for assistance sparked so many ideas, we should do more of it daily.

Just seven weeks to our next Performance Hub, at RNLI College, Poole – I’m already looking forward to it!











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