International rugby referee and seasoned financier, Alain Rolland has now embarked on a brand new challenge. Described as “the best referee of the modern era” by IRFU director of referees Owen Doyle, Alain retired at the end of last season his retirement having been described by many, as leaving a void in international refereeing.

With this in mind Alain has decided to impart his wealth of experience on and off the pitch both as an independent consultant for referee development within rugby, and a management consultant in the business world. “It’s a natural progression. The secrets of success in sport and business are very similar – the same values apply” says Alain.

In his role as a referee consultant, Alain is working with the iRB and a number of rugby unions to meet the needs of rugby referees, teams and coaches. The goal is to help them confront all challenges, to improve communication with players and officials, eliminate unforced errors and manage their way through the high pressures of a game.

With his extensive business Management experience Alain has also teamed up with Brian MacNeice and James Bowen – of Kotinos Partners – and developed a critical skills management training programme ‘ Kotinos Critical Skills’ designed to be practical and action orientated. It uses a unique training style focussing on sport as a vital part of the learning vehicle. Like referees, anyone in management is required to lead to a process, so there is value in comparing leadership qualities on the pitch with those in business.

Alain has also been active as a motivational speaker for companies in both Ireland and overseas.