Much of my success can be attributed to unreasonable leadership.

“If you know what you want, you have to go for it.”

Eli Broad

Being unreasonable is about having “1,000 songs in your pocket.” It’s having goals that are “unrealistic” and setting deadlines that “can’t” be met. It’s conceiving ideas that are “far-fetched” and doing things in a way that bucks “conventional wisdom.”

Unreasonable Leadership has been the key to my coaching success. When I took the head coaching position at McKendree in November, 2020, nobody thought we could become GLVC Champions within 18 months.

What I’ve learned over the years is that most people are suspicious of unreasonable goals and goals. Naysayers will call you crazy before they lobby to be your doubles partner. Victory has many fathers.

Lessons in Unreasonable Leadership

  • Ask, “Why Not?”
  • Revise expectations upward.
  • Pursue the untested.
  • Turn extreme preparation into competitive advantage.
  • Enlist allies and collaborators.
  • Don’t worry about what people think.

© René Vidal


A 7-time NCAA Championship Coach and 2022 GLVC Coach of the Year, René Vidal is head coach at McKendree Tennis and founder of René Vidal Leadership Academy.


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