Jürgen Klopp is among the world’s very best coaches. The 52-year-old led 1. FSV Mainz 05 to the Bundesliga for the first time in their history; he then went on to win the DFB-Pokal and two Bundesliga titles with Borussia Dortmund. Last season, he was crowned European champion with his current club Liverpool FC, and has masterminded their 25 point lead in the current Premier League campaign. In the DFB academy’s Leadership Talk, he spoke about the current interrupted season, appearances as a public speaker and how a head coach should lead his team.
… his start in Dortmund:
“When I arrived, I quickly asked to meet with fan groups, and asked them ‘what do you guys want?’ So I got a little crash course on how the BVB fans’ scene works. If you want to find out what you have to do, it helps to know what’s expected of you.”
… the conception and implementation of plans:
“I’ve always been a structured guy, and I’ve always been an early riser. So I have a lot of time during the day, and therefore I can think over things a lot. Then the players have the impression that I’ve got a plan for everything. That’s probably not entirely true, but I’m prepared for a lot of things, without needing to explicitly prepare for them.”
… decision making in a leadership role:
“When you make a decision for other people, this decision ideally has to be good for everyone. Because that’s not often possible, it should at least be good for the majority. So you need to be prepared to accept that the idea possibly isn’t perfect. If it’s well thought out, then it’s the best decision you can make.”
… the current interruption of the football season:
“In England, there are a lot of voices shouting that the season should be null and void. I think it’s very unfair. Of course there are more important things, but that doesn’t mean that the less important things have no importance at all.”
… preparing for public appearances:
“Not much can go as wrong as you imagine beforehand. The worst thing that can happen is you forget a word. But you obviously need to be calm, because when you prepare for a conversation, it’s not quite as natural.”
For me, “Everyday Leadership” means…?
“… first steering yourself in the right direction.”