Dragflick Newsdesk : Unfortunately, the Royal Dutch Hockey Association (KNHB) and Alyson Annan, national coach of the Dutch National Women’s Team, are separating immediately. The association and the national coach differ on the approach of the current process to improve cooperation and group culture at the Orange Ladies.
After the Olympic Games in Tokyo, it emerged during the evaluation interviews with the players that not everyone involved had a good feeling about the team climate in which they performed.
The observation was that the group culture, mutual communication and the individual well-being of players and staff were points that could be improved. The KNHB, which naturally considers the individual well-being of players and staff important, therefore decided to improve the performance climate on the basis of three pillars.
Improvement trajectory current team culture
First of all, the hockey association engaged an external supervisor who started a trajectory with staff and players to improve the current team culture.
Jeroen Bijl, technical director of the KNHB:
‘The external supervisor has used the past three months to take the first steps in this process with staff and team. Gradually, it became apparent that the approach that we as an association opted for in this process did not match Alyson Annan‘s vision on this. For us as KNHB there is no other way than the chosen route that we took with conviction in November. Of course we would have liked to finish the trajectory with Alyson up to and including the World Cup. Especially given her track record and what she has meant as national coach.’
Alyson Annan: ‘In recent months I have gained insight into the points that we as a team, staff and individual could work on. In my opinion there is no difference of opinion about what can be improved, but about how to approach it. I drew a line for myself there and unfortunately this is the consequence.’
In addition to paying attention to the current team climate and mutual communication, the KNHB made agreements in December with an independent confidential adviser, especially for all players of the representative (youth) teams of the hockey association. This appointment was the second pillar in the association’s aim to improve the performance climate.
Finally, there was a need for an even more careful overall picture of the performance climate at the Dutch Women’s Team. That is why the KNHB asked an independent research bureau to look into this.
This process has also started, but due to the carefulness of the investigation at the KNHB, nothing is known about this at the moment. The results of this study are expected to be available at the end of February/beginning of March.