It seems that even non-cricket fans in countries where cricket is little-known are aware that recently and following a gripping final, England won the cricket World Cup. Taking nothing away from New Zealand who were very worthy, some would say desperately unlucky losers, the English team performed very well. At the very least, in the context of a nail-biting finish, the players held their nerves and were rewarded for four years hard work. A number of the players have been singled out for particular accolades but I think that in truth, the architect of the success was the English coach, the Australian, Trevor Bayliss.
Bayliss belies the stereotypical myth that the English have of their Australian counterparts. Instead of the combination of aggression accompanied by press hysteria and some might say a tendency to gamesmanship, Bayliss is a softly spoken man who eschews the limelight. His relatively infrequent media interviews are thought-provoking and packed full of intelligent comment. There are no outlandish statements and although he does so circumspectly, when his players have been found wanting, he says so. There is little doubt that he has had a very constructive influence on the English dressing room and that when he leaves his post after the current Ashes series he will be sorely missed.
In many respects Trevor Bayliss is the antithesis of many other sporting coaches. In adopting a low profile, he does not demand or dictate. Rather he plans thoroughly and in addressing the faults of both individual players and his team as a whole, he adopts a quiet, questioning and ultimately very effective persuasive manner. He encourages players to identify their own shortcomings and to address them constructively. Additionally, there can be no doubt that although he is supported by a good management structure, he is an excellent planner. Contingencies such as the notoriously frail England batting order are allowed for and it is quite apparent that he stands at the helm of a very calm but effective ship.
What has all of this got to do with the alternative dispute resolution (ADR) services provided by ASM PLUS?
In sharing a common ethos with Bayliss, whilst in individual cases we provide a very effective mediation and arbitration service, the ASM PLUS ethos is very much geared towards helping clients and individuals to identify areas of dispute or disagreement at the earliest possible stage and helping to ensure that they are resolved before things get to the point of serious discord and threats of formal legal proceedings.
In individual mediations we at ASM PLUS strongly encourage parties not just to find a mutually acceptable solution but to reflect on how or why they reached their point of dispute. Equally, in the context of formulating a written agreement, we suggest that they not only focus on what is realistic but consider how matters can be implemented and to consider the long term.
This is exemplified in the training and the services we offer to organisations to help them address their internal difficulties and ensure smooth running, good time management and profitability. The emphasis is on issues such as how to have difficult conversations and how at an early stage to negotiate effectively. Equally, there is strong emphasis on planning, consideration of contingencies and ensuring that day-to-day mechanisms work effectively. Like Bayliss, in so doing we are not in any way dictatorial. Rather, the emphasis is very much on guidance and asking the right questions, helping people and organisations to find solutions. Guidance will of course be given but the hand that provides it is never dictatorial.
Newspaper reports suggest that in the context of the reason for England’s batting performance against Ireland Bayliss had a few strong words with his team but this appears to have been focused on identifying difficulties in moving forward rather than castigation or dwelling on what might have been. I have no doubt that even against the backdrop of that poor performance, he will have been able to extrapolate the positives.
That only leaves me now to wish Trevor Bayliss all the very best for the future. He has every right to bask in the limelight of England’s recent victory but it will never go to his head. I have no doubt that it will be the catalyst for considerable achievements on his part in the future. Oh yes and let’s hope England regain the Ashes!
Principal Director of ASM PLUS, civil/commercial, workplace, employment, family and educational mediator and trainer with a judicial/legal background. He has knowledge and expertise in dispute resolution in a wide range of areas and disciplines and mediates online.