During the past year we have witnessed significant decline in performances of athletes in a number of sporting disciplines in St Vincent and the Grenadines. The critics are lurking on the periphery anxious to decry the decline without any compunction to engage in analyses that would allow for redressing the situation.
Of course we are accustomed to the view that the role of critics is to point to the weaknesses of organisations and individuals without necessarily caring for assisting with the provision of resolutions. In this way, however, we may never find resolutions since the view of the critics will always be that perfection is not attained, at least, not in their lifetime.
There is still the belief that individuals are born leaders. While there is reason to believe that some individuals are favourably disposed to leadership in one way or another, it is the popular view that individuals have to be socialised into leadership. In St Vincent and the Grenadines the common view is that the requirements for leadership in sport must somehow differ from those for leaders in other spheres of life. The fundamental training for leadership in any area does not differ. The academic work does not differ. Where the difference occurs is in the sport specific knowledge that is required.
Unfortunately in St Vincent and the Grenadines we assume that everyone who would have played a sport and attained a fair degree of competence at the skill level is therefore adequately qualified to lead. Here again we are very wrong.
There is also a popular view that if one engages in academic work and attains a diploma or degree in physical education or one of the many fields of sport that means that the individual concerned is capable of good leadership.
The attainment of academic qualifications does little more than assure the individual that at a given point in time he was able to impress the academic institution that he did possess the information and was able to use it to fashion adequate responses to the questions posed._The fact that an individual may have all of the academic credentials on paper to show the authorities to enable access to employment as a teacher, provides no guarantee of competence in the classroom – a reality that impacts negatively the education process in every country in the world. In a similar vein the possession of certificates in physical education, sports management, coaching or technical officiating does not in any way translate into competence in the particular field and certainly does not necessarily have anything to do with leadership, in and of itself.