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A Story for Your Next Committee Meeting

Sep 01, 2020

During the fall and winter I work in academia at a satellite campus of a large land-grant state university.

I mainly teach, but our school's administration requires I "serve" by participating on various committees. I've never been big on committees and generally find them a waste of time.

Managment by "consensus" is highly over-rated and in my opinion is a tell-tale sign of a lack of leadership in an organization.

Committees are probably not going away anytime soon, and no doubt many of you will be wasting your time at an unnecessary committee meeting in the not so distant future.

So here is a great story you can share during your next committee meeting.

John Gagliardi coached at St. John's University for 60 years. John retired with a career record of 489-138-11. Gagliardi has the most wins of any coach in college football history. His Saint John's Johnnies won four national titles. He was one of the first active coaches to be enshrined in the College Football Hall of Fame.

John was well-known for his unique coaching philosophy. No players were cut. There was no tackling or use of blocking sleds and whistles during practice. There was no required strength and conditioning program and no player could call him "coach", just "John."

Gagliardi's retirement was announced back in November 2012 at a press conference. Attending St. John's officials said they were searching for a new coach and announced that Tom Stock, St. John's athletic director, would head up the search committee looking for Gagliardi's replacement.

It was at that moment a reporter asked John if he would be on the search committee.

Gagliardi immediately chimed back, "Heck no... St. John's administrators know how I feel about committees!"

"How do you feel about committees? " the reporter retorted.

John clarified. " I've been on search committees, they're worthless. I've always said committees are for the unwilling doing the unnecessary for the unfit! "

The press conference erupted in laughter.

I've shared this story a number of times during committee meetings and I strongly encourage you to as well:)




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