There’s an old Texas saying, “You can’t light a fire with a wet match”. For a leader to enlist followers they have to express passion and enthusiasm. I truly believe in those qualities and sometimes an energetic style and colorful language makes people sit up and take notice. I used those tools as Head Coach of the Winnipeg Blue Bombers in 2009 but where I failed was I didn’t engage the fan base by really knowing the teams followers and speaking their language. I thought of myself and still do as a Winnipeger with two daughters having been born here during the longest tenure of my career as the offensive coordinator from 1992-96 but I didn’t convey to the general public that we understood their needs. I thought people would remember the “good ol’ days” of straight forwardness and toughness when I was here before and we would instantly have followers that would accept our vision as their own. Our staff had a great desire to make something happen, to change the status quo. We attacked the challenge with enough bravery to fail. It’s okay to make mistakes and mis-steps create learning experiences but we didn’t communicate a shared vision to the fans and a level of mass panic ensued when success was not immediate. We had teamwork and collaboration within the building but outside of it became chaotic and we were lost in the “fog of war“. My heart will forever be scarred. I apologize to the fan base that did believe in our vision and recognized our growth, and for those that never came on board, I’m sorry we weren’t given the time to empower you to use your energies in our common goal which was and will forever be, to return the Blue Bombers to a glory that once was.