What is our collective Matilda’s obsession teaching us?
Let’s talk about the Matilda’s how can we not after their incredible performance? There would not be one Australian who hasn’t over the last few weeks willed the Matilda’s to a win.
How amazing has it been to see the entire country come together as one to share in the highs and lows? To see the AFL show it on their screen at the grounds, the footy fans actually turn on their phones during a match to watch, every video screen on planes, the list just goes on. The Matilda’s have inspired many and in particular young girls and boys who have perhaps discovered a new sport but certainly found new role models.
And we can’t discount how amazing it has been for the Matilda’s to play in front of their family and friends in packed stadiums. When you have the youngest player Courtney Vine, seal the win in the heart-stopping penalty shootout that lasted 17 minutes, the longest in Word Cup History, in front of a home crowd is just awesome.
Watching the game with England was heartbreaking and you saw how experienced the Lioness are, they were clinical in their execution of the game. However as one of the commentators said that night, they have a much larger pool of talent to choose from. Regardless of the loss Sam Kerr’s stunning goal was phenomenal.
To come fourth is an awesome achievement for the Matilda’s.
What I have been intrigued to watch is how, despite the entire country supporting them, the Matilda’s have been very humble, they are so focused, and you can see how connected they are with each other. Regardless of who the press spoke to they were all very clear on what they needed to achieve, and you could see how hungry they were to win.
The team has embraced the pressure they have all been under and given the world a masterclass in what teamwork, respect, resilience, joy and collective, collaborative leadership looks like.
Their coach talks about keeping things inside the circle, looking inwardly and protecting each other. And you can see how well this works because they are able to deflect the white noise, interest and scrutiny they have all been under.
When you listen to any of the players or the coach speak, they all know what role they play and how this in turn fits into the entire team. When they are on the ground they are leading as one, no one person is greater than the other. They knew instinctively who was behind them or next to them, there was trust and the contribution and success of the collective was more important than the success of the individual.
This collective and collaborative leadership is very powerful, it moves people to perform at their best and give it everything.
Who would have thought it would take a women’s soccer team to bring the country together as one, to have a shared experience we will talk about for a long time and create a sense of belonging especially during a penalty shoot-out.
This quote from Mackenzie Arnold gave me goosebumps and I look forward to what they do next.
(Photo by Quinn Rooney/Getty Images)