Cullen to stand down as Broncos CEO - Sports News - Fanatics - the world's biggest events

Cullen to stand down as Broncos CEO

12/07/2010 04:54:35 PM Comments (0)

Outgoing Brisbane boss Bruno Cullen says his replacement won't need a mad football head but a thick hide and a good understanding of rugby league's culture will help.

Cullen, who'll end his successful eight year reign on December 31, said his biggest failure in the high pressure post was taking things "too personally".

"I just think it's the right time, I think it's time for me to get out of the fast lane," Cullen told reporters on Monday.

Cullen will maintain a position on the Broncos board with News Limited.

"I don't doubt my ability any more, I just think it's a good time at the end of this year with the club in a very strong financial position," he said.

"The squad we've got together is one that can take the team to further success in the next few years.

"I probably feel like a footballer who's decided it's the right time to quit.

"I feel good about it and I think it's doing the right thing."

The Broncos have engaged independent contractor, Davidson Recruitment, to conduct an executive search and recruitment process to find a new chief executive.

Cullen's position will be advertised nationally at the weekend.

Cullen, who's been at the Broncos since 1989, has held the club's reins during some of its more tumultuous times.

He's fired players and disciplined others, handed out record fines and suspended assistant coaches in what's been a rollercoaster ride.

As only the third chief executive behind foundation CEO John Ribot and his successor Shane Edwards, his legacy will be to leave the club in as good a shape as he found it.

"What pleases me most is that I run a publicly listed company which is performing well and which is still an extremely powerful brand.

"When I leave next year, its sponsorship levels will again be at record levels, we're still the number one brand of any sporting code."

As for his replacement, Cullen says he doesn't need to have a rugby league background or come from within the Broncos organisation.

"A mad footy head is not necessarily the right person but someone who doesn't understand the culture that goes with rugby league is the wrong person as well," he said.

"Whoever it is will need a thick skin and have a solid commercial and financial awareness.

"You don't have to be an ex-player or a superstar, but you certainly have to understand the culture which is very different to working on the other side of town.

"It's a rollercoaster ride, you'll be under pressure, you'll be criticised. you'll have your highs and lows.

Cullen's most pleasing memory is winning the 2006 premiership after Brisbane had been written off during the season.

"The highlight for me, and it was something special and a little selfish, was the `06 premiership because of all the people I worked so hard with and all the players," said Cullen, who shared all six of the club's premierships under Wayne Bennett.

"The challenge ahead is to maintain the rage. It's hard to be successful on and off the field for long periods of time.

"I'm confident the squad has the making of a very successful team.

"You never talk premierships because they're too hard to win but I'd been disappointed if in '10, '11, '12 and '13 they weren't a major force in the competition."

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