Magic happens in team coaching when after showing resistance at the beginning the team decides to move into the right direction and it feels good for all of them. The members of the team find new ways to reach common objectives, realise why they are doing it and understand each other better. The process reduces the number of conflicts within the team, cuts down emotional outbursts, raises the team dynamics and redesigns the team identity.
This is why we believe that sailing unlike some other activities should be included in the team coaching process. Sailing is more than just a skill or strategy. It teaches us values that shape the team and make it stronger than before.
We are often so focussed on the physical aspects of sailing that we forget its social and emotional benefits.
Teamwork & Friendship
A team of sailors is forced to work together from day one on. After all, no sailor can shift his/her responsibility onto any other member. With time, sailors gradually realise that working together not only helps speeding things up but also allows them to learn more from and about each other.
Perhaps one of the most valuable takeaways from sailing are close relationships and friendships gained. It is inevitable that sailors bond together during windless days and scary storms.
Friends are made within the team. It is our job to ensure that you start to communicate with those team members with whom you did not have a great relationship in the past.
Guts & Confidence
In sailing there is a team of sailors standing against all sorts of unpleasant elements. The members of the team must fight together against strong winds and bad weather conditions regardless of how uncomfortable it is.
It is not necessary only the skipper’s job but all members of the crew are constantly engaged and required to make their own decisions. They do not always make the right ones but the chance to think for themselves helps their self-confidence grow.
Out of the Comfort Zone & Responsibility
We call this “sink or swim”. You simply must change the way you think, act or communicate because the conditions at sea are everything but steady.
The sailing crew learns to be responsible for its decisions because there is less room for mistakes than in the everyday life. We compare this situation with the daily tasks of a manager.
Managing Emotions & Discipline
It is not a secret that the sailing conditions can be quite unpredictable. It is through experiences under different sailing conditions that the sailors gradually learn how to control their emotions. At the end of the day, the best sailors are the ones who are able to best manage their emotions and prevent them from affecting other team members.
Sailing trips build a sense of discipline in the sailors as they learn to prioritize the little time they have to make the decision and stay focussed. Mistakes can lead to serious damage or even big accidents.
Sportsmanship & Patience
Sailing is a self-governing sport. This means that it is completely up to the sailors to abide by the rules and nurture the fairness of racing. It is a matter of integrity and the sailors learn the importance of fair play and obeying the rules of the game.
Whether it is about mastering a sailing manoeuvre or waiting for the next wind shift, sailing is a test of patience. Sailing manoeuvres are so complex that it could take weeks of practice to execute them well, consistently.