The leadership edge: Leadership is one of the vital human qualities that many say is missing in our modern world; what is the leadership edge, and how do we find it?
My guest, David Kitchen, found his leadership edge on the football field. David was born into a single-parent family in Berwick, Pennsylvania. It was a loving child with the usual frustrations and challenges of growing up that needed an outlet.
David was always a big lad, and that opened the door to American football, a perfect place to express his rage and passion for life. While in high school, he played well, and the scholarship offers came in, and there was every possibility that he would get to play professionally.
However, injury meant those offers did not happen. While David got a scholarship, coupled with his attitude, no professional career awaited him.
Our conversation is an insight into the game and what it is like to play at the level. Following university, a career in sales followed. It was lots of travelling and meeting people, it did not light the fire. David could not forget his love for football; he needed to get back in the game but from the other side.
He took an internship as a football coach, studied for the coach exams and at the age of 24, became the youngest coach at any university. It started a successful ten-year career, leading from the field. The key to David’s success is his vulnerability and willingness to share his mistakes and show how he overcame them. With his head coach leaving it was time to reflect on his future. Realising that his journey through coaching was the blueprint for successful leadership, he started a new business.
Today, David has successfully brought his skills from the football field into business and leadership. He is a published author, speaker and leadership coach.
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