Club culture

 :: FORUM :: BLOODS FORUM

View previous topic View next topic Go down

Club culture

Post by dl550 on Fri Aug 22, 2014 11:55 am

I just wanted to further substantiate the topics discussed and some comments made in the West V South thread post last weeks match.

I'll tell you what i am sick of tired of and it all has finally grown to boiling point this season.

Firstly i am sick and tired of the losing culture within West Adelaide. I have had a relatively short life compared to some members of this board, but have not yet been able to witness a premiership in my nearly 3 decades of living. I have, however, witnessed 3 grand final losses (91 which i was too young to attend however saw the match on TV) and 2003 and 2012 where i was present. 2003 i left with my head held high whilst in 2012 i left embarrased.

I'm sick of the way we perform good for a year or two and then drop back for another 5 or 6. I can't see this time being any different either - it's our typical cycle. It's almost like the club has become accustomed to it and everyone accepts it.

Collins had at least developed somewhat of a winning culture at the club - think the Foxtel cup. In the final there was no way we should have won that but we managed to hold on . There were several other key victories in his reign as well  - for example the 2012 Preliminary Final against North where we came back and won comfortably after a poor first quarter and the 2013 Qualifying final against the Eagles where we came back after a poor first half. that shows me an example of a strong resolve withing the group. These wins showed character and heart during his tenure. Shaun Rehn also did the same. My big question is why can't we hang onto this culture and momentum and keep it running through the club? Port Magpies had it for years, Centrals had it for years, Norwood have managed to keep it with a new change of coach, so why can't we? We never seem to be able to keep it for more than 2 years.

It seems our losing culture always infiltrates into other aspects of the club - for example our financial situation.
It seems to permeate from the league team down to the juniors. Why is there a bunch of missing talent in our juniors ? Why have none of our juniors or zoned juniors pushed through recently? Caire, Fielke, Bricknell etc are all now 26, 27. Players like Dijksman and Favretto are real young. Where is the missing generation between 21-24? who is responsible for this?

The Leadership of senior players like Schmidt and Hartlett was unacceptable this year. These players are required to demonstrate a level of discipline that should permeate throughout all the teams - from the league team down to the 16s. The Captain should not be getting banned for 2 matches - and unlucky not to get rubbed out against Sturt. I lost count of how many matches Hartlett missed over this year and the previous years. Worst of all - both of these boys are great players and need to be on the field to be contributing the team, not watching from the stands.

I'm sick of using injuries as an excuse - Injuries simply show whether you have depth or not. Norwood had several injuries in recent years, as did Central in their decade long reign. If you have the depth, Injuries can be counteracted. All the injuries showed this year was how bad our depth is and how poor our recruiting was.

Im sick of our skill level and turnovers. The good teams never make skill errors like we do. Goals like the Durdin kick to Keough on the weekend where the South Adelaide player intercepted and kicked a goal - i've seen this all too often over the years, through generations of different players - from the 90s to the 00s to the 10's. Why is this never addressed?  Or where our players handball 500 times to each other move 10 cm forward, and then voluntarily handball it over to the opposition anyway.

I'm sick of being in a winning position in games, or having a chance to win, and we fold over in the last quarter when the heat is on. It happened twice at matches i was at this year - Norwood and North. It Happened at Prospect last year when we were 27 points up in the last quarter  and lost. That's why the Sturt victory was so sweet - because it was something unusual - i became so used to losing in such matches. Once again i think it always comes back to that losing culture.

Im also sick of winning one match or being competitive one week, then the next week we go and get belted by nearly 100 points. It was totally unacceptable to get belted by Sturt and Norwood this year. We were not that much worse than them. It was pure mental fragility. We need to at least be competitive. We showed that by the other times we played them (beat Sturt and were with even Norwood for 3 quarters in the other one).

Lee, you are a passionate West Adelaide person and i appreciate all that you do (voluntarily as some people on this forum mentioned) But am i not correct that the culture within an organisation begins from the board down??? The board has to accept some responsibility for this and must start to address it now.  In the South v West thread you mentioned that 9th place is unacceptable. You're right, 9th place is bloody unacceptable....but 2nd place is unacceptable also. Until we start to adopt such a cut throat culture - we will continue to be satisfied with seasons of "a few decent performances" or "around the mark but not quite there" or start to use petty excuses like injuries or that our best junior players were drafted.

I'm also sick of hearing "Expect several announcements after the season ends". Each year we are promised something better but nothing ever seems to change. It was the same after the belting we recieved against North in the Preliminary final last year....and look how this season turned out....Until the culture changes, i can't see our onfield performances changing. We will continue to languish at the bottom of the ladder with inconsistent performances and the occasional good year to keep hopes up, such as other clubs with a losing culture (South, Glenelg) continue to do.

The club needs a big shake up, for the better and for the permanent. Myself, a person who is a passionate West Adelaide fan for life,  nothing puts fire in my belly like watching the Bloods. I won't give up or stop supporting West Adelaide - but i want to see things change. This is my chance to give some voice to the board of the WAFC - an opportunity i wouldn't normally get.

As i was saying the culture extends from the board down. Lee, whilst you and your fellow board members may not be responsible for getting us into this situation in the first place - you are the current board members who DO have the ability to promote positive change, and to steer the club into a new direction with a shift in culture.
avatar
dl550

Number of posts : 46
Registration date : 2014-04-01

Back to top Go down

Re: Club culture

Post by bundy on Fri Aug 22, 2014 12:09 pm

Brilliant dl550 absolutely brilliant cheers cheers cheers cheers cheers cheers cheers cheers 
avatar
bundy

Number of posts : 281
Location : At my bar
Job/hobbies : Lawn Bowls at Freeling
Registration date : 2013-09-24

Back to top Go down

Re: Club culture

Post by loppy19 on Fri Aug 22, 2014 12:53 pm

Bravo, great post and am sure it is why we have lost so many supporters over the years.
avatar
loppy19

Number of posts : 43
Registration date : 2013-09-30

Back to top Go down

Re: Club culture

Post by Lee Harradine on Fri Aug 22, 2014 3:14 pm

That is a great post, dl550 and I agree with just about all of it.

That may surprise you, but it is pretty much the reason why I decided to offer myself as a Board member.

I'm not interested in laying blame for the past, I just want all the things you have identified fixed.

You can take the following as fact: (and although all the Board are united on this, I can only speak for myself).

1  Our culture has to change.

2  The focus of the club must have on-field matters as a priority.

3  I do everything I can to engage openly with members and supporters and always have.

4  Our financial position will take many years to fix, unless we take decisive action.

5  We will take decisive action and hope the members and supporters come along.

6  When I say 'expect announcements to be made', I mean just that.  If there are no major announcements after this season end, you will have every right to criticise me personally.

7  I know we all want success and I know it won't come unless we are united.  We can't ask for the club to be united unless we can show a definite direction towards success.

8  Club culture does start from the Board down.  Almost all the Board are relatively new and they and the existing members have stemmed our losses to a reasonable degree.  The whole Board understands we need decisive action and, as I have indicated, decisive action is what will happen.  These are not just empty words.

9  Each time I read your post again, the more I feel we are fellow travellers, as are most of the posters here.  I defend individuals in the club, whether coaches or Board members, because I see how much work and passion they all put into their tasks and I have total confidence in them.  I defend them because disunity is death, but most of all I defend them because attacking individuals will do nothing except worsen our culture.

My general philosophy about having a successful future revolves around the following beliefs:

Unity.

Trust between the Board and members.

Inclusivity.

Financial stability, whatever the cost.

Uncompromising discipline.

A culture of winning, not 'good performances', just as you have said.

A quicker pathway for juniors to play senior football.

The end of Westies as a 'party club'.

Excellence in our oval, our finances, our commitment, our personnel and our players.


dl550, I share your passion and thank you for your post.  I hope it's a helpful catalyst for change and I'm certainly on the same page.

I will distribute your post to each Board member.

We need to be brave and we will be.
avatar
Lee Harradine

Number of posts : 653
Registration date : 2014-05-24

Back to top Go down

Re: Club culture

Post by whispy on Fri Aug 22, 2014 3:21 pm

Spot on dl550...i hope everyone on the board reads your post. Perhaps we should have a look at the way Central changed their culture that made them almost invincible over a 10 year period. I think they looked at and followed the Magpies model which made them such a successful side over many decades.
We on the other hand, think it's great to play finals on rare occasions and class those years as successful.

avatar
whispy

Number of posts : 62
Registration date : 2014-08-09

Back to top Go down

Re: Club culture

Post by Mark Beswick on Fri Aug 22, 2014 4:20 pm

Can support Lee as a board member in all of his comments above - We have some big decisions to make in the near future which will effect all aspects of the club to make it a viable, competitive going concern on all fronts and these decisions are not being taken lightly.
avatar
Mark Beswick

Number of posts : 308
Registration date : 2013-09-25

Back to top Go down

Re: Club culture

Post by scorpion on Fri Aug 22, 2014 4:42 pm

dI550

Well said,   and Lee great responce,   I feel all West Supporters would Totaly agree
avatar
scorpion

Number of posts : 255
Registration date : 2013-09-24

Back to top Go down

Re: Club culture

Post by bundy on Fri Aug 22, 2014 4:49 pm

The best reading for a long long time,i tip my hat to you sir or Dame.
avatar
bundy

Number of posts : 281
Location : At my bar
Job/hobbies : Lawn Bowls at Freeling
Registration date : 2013-09-24

Back to top Go down

Re: Club culture

Post by billrobs1 on Fri Aug 22, 2014 5:31 pm

Well done dI550.

Lee. Good response. I take some heart in what you and Mark are saying. One thing though.....My bosses hold me to account every day. If I perform I help the organisation achieve its goals and I keep my job. I don't expect anyone to defend me if I fail for the sake of "unity". If I fail then I don't deserve the wage they pay me. This is the real world.

What is being done to hold those responsible for current on field performances to account? If Unity leads to complacency then what is achieved??
avatar
billrobs1

Number of posts : 138
Registration date : 2014-03-26

Back to top Go down

Re: Club culture

Post by redandblack on Fri Aug 22, 2014 5:56 pm

Fair question, br.

Unity, IMO, doesn't lead to complacency unless we become lazy.

I'm not sure what you mean by holding people 'responsible for current on-field performances to account'. Coaches are sacked if they don't perform, Board members aren't re-elected, CEO's don't have their contracts renewed, players aren't offered another contract. I'm not sure what else is in a sporting club's power if someone doesn't perform and I may be wrong, but I'm more fixed on solutions than punishing people who have done their best. That's just me,though.

For those looking for people to blame, please bear in mind that the majority of SANFL clubs have drastic financial problems. That's the landscape, that's what has happened. I'm focussed on solutions, not retribution.

Finally, I've taken in dl550's contribution and hoping it will be helpfiul in at last changing the culture of our club. What a great post and put with passion and respect.

I will add one thing about the Board. Because I'm new, my workload is far less than the President and the longer-serving members. I'm working full time in my Chartered Accounting practice, but in the last few weeks I've attended about a dozen meetings for different projects and planning, and attended to the work that goes with that.

Sunday week I'll be in Lameroo representing the club in its Mallee zone for their B & F medal count and I'll be back in the Mallee two weeks later for their Grand Final.

That is all voluntary work and, as I said, other Board members do far more than I do.

I love it all, though and I particularly love the passion on this board from you, br, and all the posters, whether I agree with them or not.

_______________________________________________________________________________________________________________________
Kick the thing backwards.
avatar
redandblack

Number of posts : 210
Registration date : 2011-11-20

Back to top Go down

Re: Club culture

Post by Lee Harradine on Fri Aug 22, 2014 6:55 pm

Apologies, the above post is mine, wrong log in.
avatar
Lee Harradine

Number of posts : 653
Registration date : 2014-05-24

Back to top Go down

Re: Club culture

Post by Lachlan on Fri Aug 22, 2014 7:12 pm

di550


The post you have written is both brave and honest. 


Lee


As a board member its great that you are posting on the forum. Your posts 
On this matter are refreshing and also honest.


I look forward to some announcements from the club in the very near future
avatar
Lachlan

Number of posts : 429
Registration date : 2013-09-25

Back to top Go down

Re: Club culture

Post by dl550 on Fri Aug 22, 2014 7:58 pm

Thanks for your reply Lee, highly appreciate it.

I'm a big believer in letting go of the past and we can only deal with the current situation which we are in. Hence you'll find i have no qualms with the board voting in the 2 AFL reserves teams for example which has irritated some of the members who post on this forum.  That's the situation we are in now and for the forseeable future, so let's move forward. Therefore you'll also find i don't wish to apportion blame on any one person. Or name names. I simply wanted to state that as current board members you are tasked with turning the culture of the club around. Some people may interpret this as a "tedious job". Personally i think it's a great opportunity. Obviously all the board members are passionate West Adelaide fans who want to make a difference - so what better opportunity than to make a contribution to change the culture of the club for the better, for good. There is nothing better than getting behind something you're passionate about and seeing it build and build and result in success. This will give all the board members the most pure form of satisfaction available. To see that all their hard work and big decisions behind the scenes have resulted in on field success.

I just want to re-iterate i don't wish to apportion blame to any individual (in case in my first message that it came across that way) I have said nothing against the senior coach,players, CEO or anyone else. I think it's time for everyone to band together as a whole and change together. Supporters included. We are all one big team. There is not many of us West fans, but the ones we do have are damn passionate and together we can make something good happen. One of the most satisfying things for me personally after a win at Richmond is seeing all the long suffering fellow Westies fans unite and enjoy cheering their team off at the race. Or to see the same old faces standing at the 3 quarter time huddle year after year, rain hail or shine, offering support whether we are winning by 10 goals or losing by 100 points.

In regards to Hartlett and Schmidt - i didn't want to single them out too much. But simply i think their leadership can be improved. I am so impressed watching Hartlett in full flight or seeing Schmidt's silky smooth skills through the middle. They are 2 talented individuals. But they need to remain that way and focus on their attack on the ball and not get caught up in all the other banter. There is no doubt in my mind that the reason the Sturt fan singled out Hartlett and hurled abuse at him was because he was aware of Hartlett's previous volatile temper and reputation from previous suspensions. Adam and Chris need to rise above these things, and rather than answering with physical or verbal altercations, they need to let their football do the talking. That''s what true champions do, and true leaders do. And they will win the support and admiration of their peers, fans, and even opposition fans and players in the process.

I also have nothing against any staff of the WAFC or the board members. I know none of them personally - but i have not the slightest doubt that they put in hours of hard work, and that there are many volunteers who have been there for years. What better way to reward them for their service and hard work other than to finally have some on field success! Whilst i don't doubt the work ethic of the individuals, my question is more that has a culture of complacency crept into the club, rather than a culture of striving for excellence. The reality is - there are 9 other clubs across Adelaide who are also filled with damn hard working staff, volunteers, players and personnel. Sport - especially semi professional/professional is a competitive beast. The stakes are high. To work hard is not simply enough. There are other issues which need to be addressed too. We need to start to stand head and shoulders above the rest, not just "be one of the rest".

In regards to recruiting - One other thing which has annoyed me over the last 10-20 years (this is personal opinion) Is that we have often "wasted" money on "star" recruits. We have had alot of players who have been hyped up pre season and then failed to deliver - all the while collecting a large pay packet. They are going through games on cruise control, Meanwhile we have some of our Juniors/younger players busting their guts out and playing for the jumper who can't get a game.

The great thing about the SANFL (which no longer exists in the AFL) Is the fact that you can be born and bred into an area and support a team, yet still grow up and wear the jumper someday. For example all the boys from the Riverland and Mallee who grow up supporting the Bloods and get the chance to wear the Bloods strip someday. Obviously AFL you just go wherever you're drafted. In the SANFL it is still a high reality that you can end up playing for your boyhood heroes.
Unfortunately growing up, football was not my sport of choice and i chose/was given an opportunity from a very young age to pursue another sport, to which i excelled to a very high international standard. However, if i had chosen football and been good enough to achieve a competence, there would have been nothing that i would have wanted more than to wear the red and black. It would have been a major goal. To wear the jumper would give me alot of satisfaction. I would bleed for the jumper. And that is what we need - we need players who want to bleed for the jumper. For sure in this day and age we need recruits from other states and leagues - but we still need a healthy portion of the playing population coming from our zones and juniors - boys who will want to bleed for the jumper when they will grow up.
I am sure other members would feel the same on this.

I think in my couple of posts you can see that  i have alot of the same wishes as you Lee (and the other passionate members on this board), as my posts bring together the themes of unity, a change in culture, Financial stability, Uncompromising discipline, A culture of winning and excellence, and no complacency. Whilst we all want this, it won't happen talking about it, we need to take action......and the sooner the better.
avatar
dl550

Number of posts : 46
Registration date : 2014-04-01

Back to top Go down

Re: Club culture

Post by Second Team on Fri Aug 22, 2014 9:01 pm

I just think we can't kick.  Shocked Shocked Shocked

_______________________________________________________________________________________________________________________
Kick it forward. It's the new game plan.
avatar
Second Team

Number of posts : 409
Registration date : 2013-09-25

Back to top Go down

Re: Club culture

Post by Lee Harradine on Tue Aug 26, 2014 8:54 am

Thanks for your post again, dl550.

It's an excellent summary and I take it all on board.

avatar
Lee Harradine

Number of posts : 653
Registration date : 2014-05-24

Back to top Go down

Re: Club culture

Post by Coorong on Tue Aug 26, 2014 4:34 pm

9 Each time I read your post again, the more I feel we are fellow travellers,

We are spread far and wide and most probably a lot older than you, have been through some great times but they are few. You make many valid points and thankyou for them.

I miss Dash

avatar
Coorong

Number of posts : 33
Location : Meningie
Registration date : 2013-09-27

Back to top Go down

Re: Club culture

Post by bundy on Tue Aug 26, 2014 4:46 pm

Coorong wrote:9  Each time I read your post again, the more I feel we are fellow travellers,

We are spread far and wide and most probably a lot older than you, have been through some great times but they are few. You make many valid points and thankyou for them.

I miss Dash

me to Crying or Very sad
avatar
bundy

Number of posts : 281
Location : At my bar
Job/hobbies : Lawn Bowls at Freeling
Registration date : 2013-09-24

Back to top Go down

View previous topic View next topic Back to top


 :: FORUM :: BLOODS FORUM

 
Permissions in this forum:
You cannot reply to topics in this forum