Leadership Lessons from Masterchef

I’m sure I’m not the only person who observed this from Wednesday (May 26) night’s team challenge on Australian Masterchef. If you missed the episode you can find it here. Anyways, I was super-impressed by the way that Claire led her red team to victory and it got me thinking about what made her leadership so good and a potential model for any leader in any situation.

Here were my observations:

1. A good leader can have a quieter personality

It’s obvious if you’ve been following this season that Claire isn’t the loud flamboyant or vocal type. You don’t have to be in order to lead well.

2. A good leader leads

An obvious point but there are so many leaders that fail to actually lead, set direction, take responsibility… LEAD! Claire was able to actually lead her team and direct them in such a high pressure environment.

3. A good leader instills confidence

I think it was Adam who said that every time Claire came over to check on them it actually made them feel calm and assured. Compare that to the time when Joanne led her team and how vastly different the effects were when she kept an eye on her team.

4. A good leader empowers

Claire kept offering encouraging words as she went around and checked on the various people in her team. You could tell that they were empowered by her to perform even better.

5. A good leader leads by example

Claire at one stage stepped on to the floor because her floor people weren’t coping that well. That’s great leadership.

6. A good leader has great character

When Callum who was on the opposite team was struggling, Claire showed her character by helping her competitor rather than sabotaging their efforts. That shows character.

7. A good leader keeps her hand on the pulse

Claire kept an eye on everything that was going on and seemed to know where everyone was and what they were doing during prep time. This was in addition to her being responsible for entrees. Not an easy task!

8. A good leader is humble

Claire comes across as humble rather than arrogant. It shows in her manner of dealing with her team and it shows in that she shared credit for her team’s victory rather than take glory for herself.

9. A good leader looks out for the weak

I love that Claire chose Jake, one of the weaker competitors, to join her on the helicopter ride when she could have easily picked someone else. Remember that Jake was picked second-last to join the teams and has never been a strong performer. You could see that Claire won so much admiration and respect from her team for this decision, not to mention gratitude from Jake. I suspect he’d be willing to die for her after that kind of gesture. That’s great leadership!

There’s probably more. Feel free to comment and add to the list.


About Pete

I am a child of God, a husband, a father of four children, a pastor, and a church planter. I live in Sydney Australia and live to see Jesus made famous in this city and be the only God people worship.

Posted on May 27, 2010, in Ministry. Bookmark the permalink. 4 Comments.

  1. Go Claire! I hope she wins. 🙂 I too was impressed she chose Jake for the helicopter ride & I agree with her being a good leader. For me, I don’t think I’m naturally a leader. 🙂

    With point #3, do you think trust plays a big part in this? I know I can do better at trusting others & realising that it’s ok if things aren’t done my way or in my timing. Instead of looking out for flaws & mistakes (like what Joanne did), giving constructive feedback & positive reinforcement helps to encourage & instill confidence.

    Having patience, not getting easily frustrated when other members struggle & not having the attitude of “You’re not doing it right! Let me take over!” are also good qualities of good leadership. Good leaders are able to give others an opportunity to try & to make mistakes.

  2. I like these observations, Pete. I see room for a certificate subject in MasterChef.

  3. wow, so much analysis from Master Chef.
    This is very interesting, thanks for the post.

  4. Wow, that’s what I was seeking for, what a material! existing here at this blog, thanks admin of this site.

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