I have also just returned from the UK where I had the opportunity to address the FA’s UEFA Pro-Licence course candidates and the FA’s Professional Coaches Award candidates, coordinated by Mr John Peacock and Mr Neil Dewsnip. The courses are necessary qualifications for managers and coaches of FA football teams – it is their level 5 qualifications and are designed over an 18 month to 2 year period.

It was a wonderful opportunity to meet these men and women who ply their trade in one of the most competitive environments in world sport. In fact, some of the statistics suggest that while someone like Sir Alex Ferguson remained in charge for well over 25 years at Manchester United, the average lifespan for and EPL manager is more like 11 months!

The FA facility at St George’s Park, nestled into picturesque midland country, is what you would expect to see at the high performance hub of English football – everything there displays excellence.

Association (LMA), headed up by Mr Richard Bevan. This Association, along with the FA, are the principal bodies responsible for the education, support and enhancement of the football managing and coaching profession.

My trip also took me to Manchester City Football Club where I met with Mr Brian Marwood, Managing Director of City Football Services. This is an amazing centre already, but the plans for not only MCFC, but also other soccer clubs around the world begins to set City Services apart from the rest. Sheikh Mansour is the deputy prime minister of the United Arab Emirates, minister of presidential affairs, member of the ruling family of Abu Dhabi, and is the principal force behind the changes at MCFC.

This artist’s impression of what the new Etihad stadium will look like is only one part of the massive changes to this precinct called Sports City, It is a joint initiative of Manchester City Council and MCFC.

I also had the good fortune to meet with Mr Ken Smith, Agent General and Trade & Investment Commissioner for Queensland in Europe. During this visit to London, I was able to present to a group of business men and women who have developed, or are developing strong business links from Queensland into the UK and Europe.


Now back home, I will be presenting a full day workshop on high performance teams and how to coach for such performance to Leighton Holdings, Masters program in project management. Along a similar line, I will be involved with Rabobank’s Executive Development program. I continue to play an active role as an advisory Board member to Victorian Leaders which launches in Melbourne in September. This project takes me to Melbourne a couple of times each month as we meet with prospective participants, industry experts and partners for this exciting new education and training program.

A developing project is with the Queensland Government’s Department of Natural Resources and Mines (DNRM) as it looks to drive cultural change and therefore performance change throughout its staff.

Written by John Buchanan