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6th Sep, 2023

Olivia Maguire
Olivia Maguire
Job Title
Content Marketing Lead

Although women’s football has yet to reach the same level of equality as men’s football, the historic victory of the women’s national team winning Euro 2022, and now being crowed runners up of the FIFA Women’s World Cup 2023, is a step towards balancing the scales.

This achievement demonstrates the impact of strong leadership from Wiegman, who has been managing the Lionesses since September 2021, in making great things happen.

So, what can be learnt from her leadership style?

The power of agility and overcoming adversity

When it comes to Wiegman’s agility and ability to overcome adversity, she is second to none. Losing even one player in the recent World Cup final would have been significant, but losing Leah Williamson, Beth Mead, and Fran Kirby to injuries makes Wiegman and the Lionesses' achievement even more impressive. Keira Walsh and Lauren James also missed key matches due to injury and suspension.

Wiegman was forced to abandon the system she had honed during her two years in charge and reshuffle the whole team format. She reinvented the side and implemented a system where the team could fluidly switch between different styles and formation. This highlights the power of agility and the importance of creating a flexible team which, if needed, can quickly be adjusted to suit the wider needs of your business.

Being agile is a crucial skill for all managers – needing to adapt quickly to changing environments can be the difference between success or failure. For example, companies that adapted quickly during Covid-19, whether through expanding product ranges or and investing in e-commerce, thrived, whereas those that remained immobile and rested on their laurels, didn’t make it through the economic uncertainty.

We are now seeing the rapid rise of AI in the modern workplace. Those that quickly adapt to this technology, finding ways to utilise it, will stay ahead of the curve and remain competitive in the market.

Trust is key

It is evident that all players who have been in a team led by Wiegman have unwavering trust in not just her management style, but her ability to lead them to victory. So, it’s no wonder that "in Sarina we trust" is a phrase rapidly growing in popularity with football players and fans alike.

When interviewed, England forward Alessia Russo said Wiegman was: “...honest and up front - and that’s something that as a player, I really respect. I think it’s really nice that you can have those open and honest conversations with the leader of your team. She just makes camp a really enjoyable place to be.”

This approach of open and honest leadership is what companies that seek to have a great company culture, fostered by trust, honesty, and integrity, strive for. When employees trust their leaders and colleagues, they are more likely to feel valued, respected, and empowered. This can lead to increased productivity, collaboration, and innovation. Leaders can implement this type of culture by being transparent in their communication, admitting mistakes, and actively seeking feedback from employees.

Values and teamwork

Wiegman instils a strong sense of team spirit in her players, emphasising the importance of working towards shared goals rather than individual achievements. Wiegman’s approach is to foster a sense of community within her teams, where personal ego is set aside in favour of collaboration and everyone playing their part.

Her philosophy is that success for the team ultimately leads to success for each player. This is evident in interviews with her players, who often speak about their teammates and give credit to others for their contributions.

In the world of work, teamwork has always been a vital skill that many leaders look for in their employees. But being a team player is an essential management trait. Understanding that your successes are the whole team’s success, and encouraging a sense of shared responsibility is key for not only employee engagement but achieving goals and targets.

In conclusion

Wiegman’s leadership style offers valuable lessons for leaders in all fields. Her ability to be agile and overcome adversity, foster trust and honesty, and instil a strong sense of team spirit and shared values has led her team to historic victories.

By embracing these traits, leaders can create a positive and supportive culture that empowers their teams to achieve great things. Wiegman’s success with the Lionesses serves as a powerful reminder of the impact of strong leadership.

If you are looking for a strong leader to join your team, get in touch with one of our specialist consultants today.