Ray McLean

“Ray is unassuming; his influence on leadership and therefore the impact he has had has been done quietly and hence he hasn’t received the accolades he has deserved. Ray has possibly done more for leadership in its broadest terms in this country than any other person in Australia.”

David Parkin

AFL Premiership Coach

Ray McLean founded Leading Teams in 1992 and has 27 years of experience as a leadership and management consultant. Ray began his working life as a teacher, working for 10 years in schools in regional Victoria, and holds a Bachelor of Education.

From 1989 to 1994 Ray worked with the RAAF as a training and leadership officer and was responsible for the design and delivery of leadership and team training for the Airmen Aircrew Training Unit. During this time he worked extensively in the areas or leadership and team development, particularly with the Maritime Patrol Group for six years. Ray made the observation early on in his career that if a company needs to have a huge sign espousing their value to their clients, then the staff are probably not displaying those values with their actions. As Ray’s focus has always been on action not words he set about developing a model that would help teams to align the behaviours and actions with their espoused values.

In 1992, Ray ran a pilot program involving the Central Districts Football Club. Their performance improved and as some of their corporate partners also took up the program, Ray found that as he had suspected the model could be applied to a range of teams. It was from these experiences that Leading Teams was born.

Ray has also used his experience to write two books. The first book “Any Given Team” provides an insight into Leading Teams’ philosophy on leadership and teamwork. Throughout the book Ray explains the Leading Teams model with a variety of accounts and case studies from his work with a range of teams. The second book “Team Work” is a collaborative effort. Team Work utilises the experiences and journeys of the facilitators at Leading Teams to give a more in depth account of the Performance Improvement Program run by Leading Teams.

In his position at Leading Teams, Ray conducts team performance and leadership programs for professional sporting clubs and mentors a number of senior sporting executives. Ray delivers a Strategic Leadership Training program to an elite group of emerging AFL leaders (in partnership with the AFL Coaches Association). Ray has previously worked with the Sydney Swans, St Kilda Saints, Adelaide Crows, and Carlton Blues in the AFL; The Australian Cricket Team, Boomers and Opals (National Basketball Teams), Sydney Kings (NBL), St George Illawarra (NRL) and NSW Waratahs (Rugby Union). Ray’s current clients include:

  • Hawthorn Football Club (AFL)
  • Fremantle Football Club (AFL)
  • Collingwood Football Club (AFL)
  • Australian Netball Team (The Diamonds)
  • Newcastle Knights (NRL)

“I am extremely passionate about the responsibility of the facilitator in managing the journey for teams and individuals as they strive for high level performance. In particular, as people engage in the more difficult conversations around performance, within the team, the facilitator must ensure the environment is safe.”