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  • From selection to potential development

    10/06/2014 | Zaltbommel

    In this 'Schouten Blog' Anje-Marijcke van Boxtel (director coaching Schouten Global and coach of Team Brunel) writes, among other things, about her experiences in the talent-selection process, the training sessions on Lanzarote, her presence in the ports of the stop-overs of the Volvo Ocean Race 2014-2015.

    We’re almost ready!
    Bouwe, Jens, Pablo, GerdJan, Andrew, Louis, Rokas, and Timo: the crew is almost complete.Therefore, the selection process is almost behind us. In January, the sponsorship was finished and in the same month we received a professional contribution for the big selection days in Naarden. As you probably have already noticed, naked male torsos are floating all over social media and adorning the walls of a single office!

    The team aspect
    The selection is an intense process, made up of three professions: 1) the sailing and racing skills were judged by Bouwe and Brunel, 2) the physical aspect was evaluated by Bergman Beweging (Bergman Motion), and 3) the psychological aspect (in other words, the team aspect) was determined by Schouten’s Marjo Louwers, Assessment Expert, and myself from the perspective of Team Coach. To our great surprise, we realized that the three perspectives resulted in exactly the same three preferences: of the 20 candidates in Naarden, we chose six for three spots: two ‘under 30’s, and one above 30. The list of preferences determined the order of selection. Marjo and I waved off the first three permanently chosen candidates from Southampton for their initial offshore sail with the Volvo 65.

    Getting the most out of everything
    Ten days later I joined the dinner being held in Lanzarote. The men still had the wind and salt in their hair; they had just arrived an hour before, tired but satisfied. In Lanzarote, Bouwe and I discarded our “selection-glasses” and focused on getting the most out of everything, with the notion that the correct choices will become obvious. That meant that we hadn’t made any changes, and new potential candidates had joined us. That fit with the fact that the training for the race had already begun; the numbers of those becoming familiar with the boat is a vital factor in winning the race! The experienced sailors introduced the new ones to the boat, and I was present mainly for the mental aspect of team buiding. Even by working on forming a strong, interactive team, it is striking that each time the team has to ‘reset’ when someone new joins. Great talks with Bouwe, and also with the other men. Exploring, changing, confronting, challenging.

    Big smiles & deep disappointment
    IJmuiden after the second crossing, middle of May. Hard decisions are being made. The learning curves were steep for Louis and Rokas. They are to become the two “under 30’s”. Timo made it to primary spare and in-shore sailor. Robert was unable to fully acheive the transition to big-boat sailing and Pieter-Jan surpassed his own limits after the trials. Although too late for Team Brunel, it did however, give him the feeling as though he was flying on the Finn! We’ve had incredibly enjoyable and amazingly difficult conversations! Such big smiles are not often seen, nor such deep disappointment felt.

    Growing phase
    The final crew member will soon be announced, and that will be it! The team is ready to move on to the next phase: a period of growth, honing, and fine-tuning. As soon as the hectic June promotion month in the Netherlands and Belgium is over, the training will begin full steam ahead. The focus will be on maneuvers and team processes. Three months based in Lanzarote and Alicante, and I am looking forward to it! 


    Nothing from this blog may be reproduced without written permission from Anje-Marijcke van Boxtel of Schouten Global.

    Update Team Brunel, June 10, 2014 
    by Anje-Marijcke van Boxtel, Director Coaching - Schouten Global
    Coach - Team Brunel in the Volvo Ocean Race 2014-15


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