He Loves ‘All Blacks’ Rugby Team Comparison
To the Editor, Parking Today:
Thank you to Kevin Warwood for his insightful correlative article (in Parking Today, March 2015) linking rugby to effectively managing a parking – or any other – business team. I couldn’t agree more that the New Zealand “All Blacks” model for success sets the standard for any organization wanting to achieve excellence.
I am a long-time manager in a municipal parking environment in Southern California and was bitten by the rugby bug a little over four years ago.
What struck me – besides obviously being the greatest sport ever developed (and being sorry it took me 43 years to discover!) – was the true team spirit and camaraderie that come with the sport whether playing or watching, and that anyone on the team can score the game-winning try. ...
Rugby team-oriented play has long been my mantra for managing my parking enforcement team, even before I knew it was, as all of them have the ability to represent the entire program every time they make contact with the public in an enforcement or informational context. Each and every one of them can figuratively either carry the ball forward or set the team back with every contact situation – just like every player on the rugby pitch.
Since my exposure to rugby, I have been employing this team-oriented culture more and more to even greater success of my enforcement team. Setting high standards and calling out our successes and failures openly (generally not the standard in a government setting) have resulted in greater buy-in and ownership of personal and team successes and failures.
The “healthy impatience” Warwood refers to with the All Blacks team culture is akin to “thinking outside the box,” being hyper-vigilant in correcting even the smallest problems, and being innovative in using the latest technological advances in establishing an enforcement program that is beyond question and reproach.
Finding and addressing the weaknesses of your parking program, so that there is no chink in the armor, is no different from the All Blacks’ crushing offense. And consistency and repetition so that all of your parking staff has the same answer and response to every question or situation is no different from the All Blacks’ relentless defense at the “try line.”
I suppose one could go on and on with the correlation between rugby and parking business management, but I hope Warwood’s article rings true with more of the Yank readers of Parking Today. As the sport grows in popularity here in the States, I also hope more and more people realize how rugby – and the All Blacks model for success – can be used in a business context to the benefit of any team.
It certainly helps in a parking enforcement team environment!
Thank you again for the enjoyable article.
Parking Enforcement Supervisor,