Dominik Neidhart: Good planning and agility on the road to success.

02. April 2021 – Oliver Stoldt

Americas Cup winner Dominik Neidhart puts it straight out there : “Only a bad team is as weak as its weakest member. In fact, it is always the strongest who pull a team along and lead it to success. And that’s who a team absolutely needs.”

Years ago, when the topic of agile leadership was still in its infancy, top athlete Dominik Neidhart pointed out what seems to be regarded as tremendous news in many places these days: “The prerequisites in the top echelon include, first, that all members fully identify with the goal, second, that they have the necessary skills, and third, that communication and coordination function smoothly. Finally, a transparent climate of trust is essential.” It’s as simple as that.

Dominik Neidhart: Good planning and agility on the road to success.

He knows from sports that “teams are collective actors, that is, agents in which different members want to and should work together. At the same time, all members would never be equal in terms of experience, knowledge and skills. But part of the essence of a well-formed team is that the different and sometimes not quite equal abilities are bound together and inequalities are balanced out in the process.

Swiss born Dominik Neidhart once studied medicine, but found his true passion in sailing. In three different America’s Cup Challenges with an unsuccessful start, a triumphant victory and a bitter defeat, he was able to gain important experience that today makes him a sought-after speaker on the business stage.

In his lectures, he likes to show videos of his spectacular sailing trips, which can take your breath away. Things have to move quickly, Neidhart says, when conditions change. He talks about sailing, we think about agile leadership and Scrum & Co. We can certainly learn a lot from the team spirit that must prevail on an America’s Cup sailing ship. Dominik Neidharts’ performances are characterized by pure passion for the sport, which he still practices when he finds the time: Rich in gestures, he talks about the years of preparation for a race in his signature talk ” Go Hard or Go Home – From Challenger to Winner.” In the process, it becomes clear that in top-level sport, every detail, no matter how small, counts, from the cut of the boat, the surface, and the material to the weight and placement, the number and shape of the sails, and the height of the mast. And yet there is always room for maneuver, because no one can predict the conditions that nature creates one hundred percent. If something changes at sea, the entire team has to adjust within seconds. If that’s not agile, we don’t know it.

Domink Neidhart speaks in German and English. For more information on lecture topics and focus areas, please call us at The Premium Speakers Agency.

Dominik Neidhart

Sailor, America's Cup Winner Alinghi, Athlete