Kieran Donaghy is a multiple All Ireland winner with Kerry GAA and also as one of the top basketball players in the country. In addition, Kieran’s autobiography “What Do You Think Of That?” won the eirSport Sports Book of the Year 2016. Donaghy has won four All-Ireland Senior Football Championship medals, eight Munster Championships and a National League title with Kerry, and is the recipient of two All Stars Awards.
What has sport taught you about leadership?
That you must lose first before you learn how to win. Everyone is different and that’s ok, stay on persons good side as you never know when you may need to lean on them for help.
What are the essential components to building a winning team?
Trust, effort, honesty, and a positive mental attitude.
What is one characteristic that you believe every leader should possess?
Communication, every leader should be able to communicate with all his team and realise that some teammates have to be talked to in different ways to get the best out of them.
If you could wind back the clock to when you were starting your sporting career what advice would you give yourself?
Get more sleep. Sleep is very important for the body but more so the mind and the mind is what drives the body.
What leaders outside your own organisation do you admire and why?
Ronan O’Gara, calls it as it is and had the guts to do great things when the game was on the line, that’s real leadership.
What are a few resources (books, blogs, podcasts, courses etc) you would recommend to someone looking to gain insight into becoming a better leader?
There is some great stuff on line about leadership and its well worth a look. Having said that you can read all the books and look at stuff online but its having the conviction to stand up when needed and be a leader is the hard one, but once you do it and have conviction it becomes easier the more you do it.
What is the one mistake you witness leaders making more frequently than others?
Thinking they have all the answers, sometimes leaders don’t know how to react if they don’t have the answer, sometimes all you have to do is listen.