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Deefensive Language

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  1. Glad you asked. I see this happen all the time. Kids will approach complaining about XYZ thing that makes them uncomfortable. I will ask, "have you told *name of teacher directly responsible*?" "No, because he/she doesn't listen/doesn't care." Other times I witness this lack of awareness or care factor in a colleague. They will misinterpret a complaint or misdemeanour and view it through their own often flawed lens. The kid looks at them with masked disdain - there is little wonder why so many people enter adulthood with that same chip on their shoulder: "teachers are jerks/losers....they didn't understand me etc." Some brave fools speak up when they believe something to be unjust, unfair or heavy-handed. But these green dissenters have not the psycho-social development required to allow the target of their protests to save face. An authority figure (especially one with an ego or poor social skills themselves) will never allow themselves to be publicly out-argued by an underling. So this just intensifies the feeling of injustice. It gets dire when you know something is unjust and no-one says anything. Either they are losing hope or they're getting smart enough to keep their lack of respect to themselves. A coach or teacher (same thing) needs to listen and listen well. Listen openly without judgement. Be open to hearing views that conflict with their own. And they need to act on whatever they hear in a level-headed and strategic way. The doubled-edged sword is that gaining a reputation for listening leads to more people seeking your counsel. But doing so will earn you respect and an army of followers. This is on an emotional level, not a logical one - which you need to build a dynastic football team. See how Hardwick loves his players and is loved by them? Back to the original question...you're screwed as a teacher if the students/players do what they did. Sadly, many never realise or understand that this is how they are perceived. Many others may learn this but refuse accept it as a dealbreaker. Would you expect your significant other to respect you if you knew they already went behind your back? And instead of properly addressing the elephant in the room, you just went about your business like an ignorant buffoon? Goodwin found himself on the losing side of one of these human resource management dilemmas. We don't know for certain, but much of it stems from young people not finding him (and Jones for that matter) to be approachable. Perhaps Roos was a father figure, and Goodwin was the more "down to business" operator who didn't have time for anyone. Even impressions can change behaviour. Here's what we knew at the time: - The players who "dobbed" didn't want to appear soft (Goodwin did not appropriately communicate/understand what soft/hard actually means for young footballers). - The AFLPA suggested to MFC after 2017 that it was over the top (A wise manager/listener would address this with non-judgemental questioning and listening) - Goodwin viewed it as a lost opportunity for the group to grow together (he was publicly challenged and refused to change his opinion. So much for positioning himself as someone who can be confided in.) There's also the matter of Goodwin and co not knowing the types of young personalities in their midst. Who had teenage anxiety? Who had impostor syndrome? Who had clinical perfectionism? Who drove themselves to vomit before a game to deal with the stress? Coaches/recruiters MUST recruit first and foremost based on temperament, initiative and openness to ideas (with raw skills secondary). Then an individualised plan developed to help manage them (which includes LISTENING). Dusty Martin was carefully nurtured in this way at the beginning of his career. You can't change the world in this way, but you can definitely shape a small community of 20-30 (size of a classroom/football team) to be united and work together. Outside influences (like health, personality deficiencies, loved ones) can make this harder. In a classroom this can be a losing battle, be in a football team, you can hire/fire however you like. And to tie this into the topic of this thread, a mission statement helps you build strategic people management plans like this into the fabric of a club. Without it, a place seesaws around randomly from year to year, coach to coach.
  2. Fanatique, thank you for your well thought out comments and insights from a fresh perspective. As a teacher, I see tremendous value in building a shared belief system and values-based structure to help drive performance/achievement. As you have mentioned, some organisations do this well and some do it terribly. In schools, this can be even more stark. The right support structures and underlying values are necessary to maintain unity. They are a reminder of expectations and highlight a way forward. In schools that have not undertaken such a process, you end up with teachers and support staff that progress from stress to apathy. And as a result, students progress from anxiety to carelessness to insolence. Young people need boundaries to not only feel safe but also to develop in the appropriate ways. Without it you have chaos. Not only does nothing get done, but people check out. This is fractured further by narrow-sighted parents who can further complicate things with their own individualised values (eg. I will teach my child to fight fire with fire against bullies). This can fester and be incredibly hard to turn around. Even though you may want the academic results (ie. premierships), you're never going to get there without a significant reset. Is this happening at MFC? It sure looks like Goodwin is stressed, and people like Pert appear to be apathetic (with his perceived lack of initiative in response to our year). Players like Gus look anxious and wracked with indecisiveness on field. Carelessness was apparent against Sydney on Friday night and Oliver's on-field antics were a display of insolence. Gawn, ever the optimist, is giving it another crack (check his most recent Tweet) but looks just about ready to check-out if things don't improve. Shaun Smith revealed to us all how angry he was at the management of his son. Luckily for Joel, Mission is now gone, because I don't think he could have functioned under him after what dad said. People seem to forget that a club needs to guide, train, inspire and motivate a group of emotionally under-developed BOYS to work together and grow into men. You need to communicate with teenagers and early 20s people in a certain way, so that they become wise and self-aware 30 year-olds who can support you in that process. Look at Fagan (ex-teacher) and his weekly one-on-ones with Brisbane's boys. Look at Clarkson and the way he turned just about ALL of his 2008 boys into solid, articulate, insightful and emotionally intelligent leaders. Many organisations (including schools) are run by shaky leadership that either a) fail to understand the importance of genuine cultural growth, or b) are power-hungry egotists themselves. When the cynics to your post say that these mission statements are pointless corporate wankery, the reason is either a) or b) above. And in this case you end up with a whole host of people underneath that care only about getting bread on the table. It breeds more cynical/individualist behaviour and the cycle continues! Clearly a football club is different to a for-profit corporation. We're not aiming to profit at all costs - the stakeholders (members) want on-field success. I want my football club to recognise the importance of real shared values. If there are players (or players' parents/partners), coaches, trainers who believe it to be wanky, then their cynical influence will have a toxic effect and they need to be removed. If top-leadership initiate the process Fanatique described simply because "it's the thing to do" and care only about the plaque, then they will be a major cause of the decline. You can't lament the poor leadership of Jones and Viney and in the same breath say that there is no place for strong values at a club. Neither can you stand up on a soapbox and say, "just win premierships", expecting every individual to figure it out for themselves. Given the criticism of the OP, no wonder MFC has been internally broken since 1964. This old-boys club, ultra-conservative cynicism and ignorance of modern inclusive practice needs to end. But sadly, as I'm sure you're aware Fanatique, the prevalence of negative/non-critical opinions (which they are entitled to) can partly explain the hindrance of real growth.
  3. Normally I renew without question, and even up until a month ago I would have said of course yes. But now I'm a wait-and-see. If the decisions made are promising, the offensive spin coming from the club ends, and we come to play in the preseason then yes. Otherwise, if we have a good run a third of the way through the season I may consider a three game membership. Watching on TV until it becomes clear the players actually care.
  4. The cheer squad are raising a chant with the ball up the other end and Sydney about to goal. Call the mental hospital and cart off these poor wretches...
  5. I'm at the game and listening on the radio. There's such an eerie feeling here...and the commentators on Triple M are stunned at how dry this is." We need to rebuild our identity" is call from Luke Darcy. There's no hiding any more. Everyone knows this is one of the most pathetic performances an AFL team has put out in recent years since that 180 point loss to Geelong. At three quarter time Max was giving everyone low fives. The coaches were just standing hunched like cowards. No passion, motivation, anger. Just nothingness. I'm waiting for one of those vein popping lunatics to stand by the race and hurl abuse at them once they head down the race like the good old days. 'STAND UP BOYS!!!!' Don't think anyone cares enough though. Better off if the board was spilled and team was bought by corporates who give a [censored] about what's left of the brand! *end MFC induced temporary psychosis
  6. Now Oliver missed the handball!! These guys are not acting professional at all....
  7. Oliver standing around begging for the handball after Fritsch did well to hit ANB on the chest. Petty behaviour or he doesn't trust ANB ?
  8. Sydney have three goals straight from centre clearances. And now we can't even exit D50 without panicking.
  9. I think there's a lot of misunderstanding going on. The camp itself is not affecting our performance right now. The aftermath of unchecked resentment against a leader COULD be killing our drive and "connection" between Goodwin's game plan on paper and our execution. If players don't respect you they won't bleed for you out on the footy field. To those who say "it was 18 months ago, get over it" try telling that to a bitter spouse 18 months after you cheat on her (just to show an example of how impressions and biases last and bitterness remains when left to fester rather than be properly addressed and confronted). People arguing otherwise must not know what it feels like to work under a boss who [censored] you off months ago and doesn't seem to give a stuff. Even the sight of their face can annoy you. I'm not saying this is happening now, but it could be considering the ODD malaise that hit so many of our playing group. This goes beyond general conditioning. Teams don't just plummet like we did without some weird [censored] going on. It's too extreme a downfall for there to be a simple explanation. Calling this a blip is offensive.
  10. You've hit the nail on the head in saying that there's always more than meets the eye. It's an issue for supporters of all football clubs. Given the tanking issue and everything since, it would be a nice gesture to the members for someone in a position of power to call enough is enough on lids being placed and just admit misjudgements (we all make them!) The Adam Goodes story is a good case study. It feels so normal to break it open now but at the time there was a huge ignorance surrounding the whole affair. Maybe the pre season camp and resulting resentments are resolved...but maybe they aren't. The only way you ensure everyone's recovered as an organisation is get everyone together and reflect. In a big business you just fire the dissenters but you can't run a footy team like that.
  11. Have a reread of the original Caroline Wilson report about the brutal preseason camp that was cancelled at the last minute due to player anxiety and subsequent AFLPA intervention. https://www.theage.com.au/sport/afl/the-fall-out-from-the-melbourne-pre-season-camp-fiasco-20180316-p4z4oe.html The media has forgotten (particularly after 2018 success), which Wilson admits would have happened. But a few quotes strike me as worthy of revisiting 18 months later. "And co-captain Jones, who fully expected the camp to go ahead, sees fault on both sides in terms of communication but believes he understands his younger teammates so much better now." Jones found himself between a rock and a hard place. At this level of leadership, if you find yourself losing touch with the viewpoint and methods of higher-ups, trouble will brew. Captain and coach must be 100% aligned in their vision. In the 18 months since, has Jones been given any reasons to lose faith in Goodwin. After what we've seen, the chances would be extremely slim he remains a loyal foot soldier. TMac as well...a very articulate man...was clearly keen to re-sign last year. Beginning of this year, he was a shell of himself. What struck his motivation? ‘"It must be a slow news day,’’ said Melbourne president Glen Bartlett unconvincingly back in December." Can you imagine an old man running the whole show saying that when you're crapping your pants about sleep deprivation exercises and empathizing with a teammate who had his season (and likely career) derailed? (I'm not blaming Tyson's decline entirely on the kneecap issue, but we often forget how sharp he was in his final year at GWS). In other words, the board are out of touch. Have they successfully built a strong culture? A family culture like you find at Geelong or Hawthorn. A club insider I know from the mid 2000s era saw a sick culture and clueless board. I wonder what Paul Roos thinks. Find it suspicious he never speaks out about how much he loved his time there? The silence is deafening. "The Goodwin view is that his team missed an opportunity to grow stronger together." Clueless. Anxiety brewed unchecked throughout 2017. Isn't it his job to perceive this? Or earn the trust of enough so that he can put his biases aside and listen/accept responsibility? We have seen in this year's presses Goodwin is unwilling to speak hard truths. Completely blinkered to the reality of how the team is being exploited by cunning opposition. But, psychology tells me that's it's not mere stubbornness. I genuinely don't think Goodwin realises the subtleties of what is happening. We've all had bosses who couldn't see past their own egos. Goodwin's ability to empathise with a playing group is absent. But in a twisted way we can't admonish him for this because he may just plain not get it. It is well established you can't just tell a person to change. They need to come to the conclusion themselves. Imagine how Jones and TMac felt when their coach turned around and lamented the missed opportunity to GROW on a camp! Jones singlehandedly kept a young crew afloat when Neeld was crushing the place. And just this year, Trac nearly drowned in the pool doing useless hypoxia training. Goodwin joked about and said he needs to remember to breath next time. This is a man who does not understand 18-35 year old men - their needs, wants and social lives. It's easy to forget for the casual observer how the human emotions are so completely entwined with output and performance in the workplace (or the playing field). I'm sure crusty traditionalists like Danny Frawley will say we need to harden up and take it. I'm in my mid 30s and I don't necessarily like the "new normal" either! But you can't deny that the world is different now. It's irrational, challenging and rife with over-parenting (even of those over 18 years) and entitlement. Footy has entered a sensitive age, and with more and more young men crumbling under the weight of expectation, the need for emotionally intelligent human leadership is absolutely essential. Look at Buckley/Hardwick/Fagan examples in recent times. Is it too late for the club to confront the mistakes of the past? Are they capable? Because I sure as hell don't want to waste my time, money and emotional energy supporting a failed relic from another era. I want to support and happy, brave, mindful group of people that understand modern life in the 2020s, and why we play football in the first place.
  12. Has anybody had a read of the original comments on this thread? I'm new to this forum, but that Round 4 game last year against Hawthorn was the moment I wisened up to Goodwin's impact on the club. Does anyone recall his odd tactic of starting the centre bounces without wingmen? Smith and Shiels cut us to pieces and the commentators thought the tactic must have been a mistake or communication breakdown. But Goodwin refused to switch things around. It became clear as day how stubborn and negligent the man was on game day. As we know the season turned around, but I have a feeling the player's were never really doing it for Goody. We got to where we did through a wave of emotion but when this collapsed on prelim final day and our rot of a post/pre season began, the whole bundle got dropped. Goodwin publicly stated that reviewing the prelim would not help. This is poor leadership. It seems so clear in the demeanour of senior players like Gus, Gawn, Viney, Jones, Hibberd that something is clouding them. It's as if, through gritted teeth, they are harbouring some kind of resentment for the system at Melbourne. We are all jumping on Jones/Viney...calling them useless and pathetic etc. But players don't just switch personalities in the way they have without something else being afoot. There is no unity, no passion.. because there is a limit to how much an individual can show when the support structures/vision/resources fall away. The coaching situation is killing the club. Goodwin must accept and step down OR put a line in the sand and work on himself and rebuild the team culture from the ground up. Is he capable?
  13. I agree with you that OMac played honourably today, given his recent history and the nature of today's game. The real concern for me is that this option was entertained in the first place by our limited and apologist coach, and that our "getting around" Oscar reaction was not replicated when the game was there to be won. Collingwood shifted gears early in the second and we needed to match them. The only time our heart and unity came out was after that goal.
  14. What was sad for me to hear is how listless Anthony Hudson was. The man is a quality commentator and can build excitement for the contest. But Melbourne (and Collingwood!) were so listless and bog standard that you could tell he wanted to be anywhere but the commentary box. FMD what a waste of three hours for everyone involved...even the security guards who only had to watch over several thousand bored people just sitting there like stunned mullets.
  15. OMac's goal reminded me of the Under 10s when the coach makes sure everyone gets a turn. Participation ribbons for everyone.
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