India’s U-19 Success Story – Things every Product Manager can Learn from Rahul Dravid
By Arijit Banerjee
Though not a good start to India’s tour of South Africa, the Indian team, under skipper Kohli’s leadership is raging to come back with some good action in Johannesburg. Meanwhile, what’s creating all the buzz is the Indian U-19 team’s performance in Australia.
Now, here’s a very interesting point that comes up in the contrasting performance of both these teams. The senior Indian team and the U-19 team are both contesting on foreign soil that has a reputation for high bounce and sharp swings. So, why is the outcome different? Some might argue that the format is not the same but that does not take away anything from the skills that this team of young players, under the guidance of Rahul Dravid is displaying. Defeating Australia in their backyard is no mean feat and that too with a big margin. The team also defeated Zimbabwe today with 10 wickets, which again, is a big margin.
The apparent success can be attributed to one man’s silent efforts and commendable management skills and he is none other than the coach of this team – Mr. Rahul Dravid. His impeccable and well-planned endeavor in building this team and managing it can be a great lesson for anyone, especially product managers. Here’s a look at some of his key tactics that are yielding well.
Prioritise and start early on your project – In June 2015, news was doing the rounds that Dravid could be offered the job of coaching the Indian cricket team, which he probably was. However, he had other plans on his mind. Dravid took up the charge of coaching the India A and U-19 teams. He focussed on sourcing the right talents and nurturing them.
Communicate well to your team – It is always difficult to attain success in a team game, as a mistake by one member can spoil the course of the entire game, much like what happens in developing a product. This is where Dravid did a commendable job of communicating well with the youngsters and keeping them informed and motivated about their respective roles.
Take data-based smart decisions – India’s fantastic run in the ongoing U-19 world cup can be attributed to Dravid’s smart decisions. In the last U-19 world cup too, India left early to acclimatize to the playing conditions and they performed well in the tournament. He knew that the playing conditions in the down under are much different from what it is in the sub-continent, so, he requested the BCCI to send the team early for the world cup. This enabled the players to acclimatize to the conditions and get accustomed to the bounce and swing. Needless to say, the results are quite evident.
For a product manager, who is much like the coach of a cricket team, it is important to set priorities, communicate well to their teams and make smart decisions based on data and past experiences. On that note, let us wish Dravid and the entire team great luck ahead in the tournament.
Let us know what you think about Rahul Dravid’s skills in managing the young team in comments below.