You Must Have “Ice in Your Veins!”
Originally published on March 19, 2019
Updated on October 27th, 2023
The demands within college athletics industry require leaders to possess certain leadership traits in order to be successful. Guest author Bill Carr, of CarrSports Consulting, LLC, summarizes three essential qualities of a great leader not just in college athletics, but more broadly in higher education or in any business.
For more than forty years I have served personally in leadership roles within intercollegiate athletics, which includes extensive time selecting and training other people to do the same. Based on that experience, I have concluded that to be a genuinely successful leader in this demanding industry over the long term, you must have “ice in your veins.”
As used here, the expression “ice in your veins” does not mean simply that you have an immunity to pressure. Rather, it connotes that you are intrinsically and consistently motivated to develop and display the three essential qualities that create “ICE: I-C-E: Integrity, Curiosity and Energy”. Here’s how I see those descriptors in the profile of a great leader:
INTEGRITY: Primarily because you are committed to ethical behavior and always do the right thing, people trust you implicitly. Truly, your word is your bond and people depend on it.
CURIOSITY: Your innate intellectual curiosity produces an insatiable thirst for knowledge, the accumulation and analysis of which leads to an even more precious quality – wisdom. You relentlessly pursue the “cutting edge” trends, best practices and innovations of your fast-paced, competitive business and constantly engage to learn more individually and collectively within your staff for strategic purposes.
ENERGY: Your sustained, intense energy gives you perseverance and resilience. Your true grit enables you to find a way to get things done. And you finish strong!
This formidable combination of “ICE: Integrity, Curiosity and Energy” not only gives you unique insights and acumen; most importantly, it also shapes your attitudes and actions. You are highly regarded as a dynamic force whose counsel is sought and treasured. Ultimately, your consistent display of good judgment in decision-making significantly advances your organization in fulfilling the vision, mission and core values you have inspired.
The demand and search for such effective leaders are a constant and universal quest. As you achieve today and build for your future, I encourage you to measure and enhance the level of “ice in your veins.” I can guarantee that your personal and professional return on investment will be extraordinary.
Bill Carr is an executive search and management consultant and founder of CarrSports Consulting, LLC, with over 40 years of experience in college athletics. CarrSports is a trusted resource for leadership placement and program advancement exclusively within intercollegiate athletics. As confirmed by its unique and extensive work record over the past two decades, CarrSports consistently provides its clients with comprehensive knowledge of current industry trends and issues. The information in this article is provided solely by guest columnist Bill Carr.
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