Know the Game
When you think of the great player-coaches in professional sports history, the same names routinely come to mind. Bill Russell led the Boston Celtics to two NBA championships while simultaneously playing and coaching. Tris Speaker won a World Series managing the Cleveland Indians and playing center field. Doug Milne serves as the Managing Partner of Canada ICI’s Calgary office, while also excelling as a commercial mortgage broker.
Alright, so maybe Doug doesn’t have the international fame of a Russell or Speaker, but that doesn’t mean he’s any less effective as a player-coach. “In terms of leadership — whether it be in sports, at work, or at home — the best leaders are also doers,” Doug says. “The best leadership quality that I value is somebody that I can see living it and doing it, not just talking about it.”
Since Canada ICI established the Calgary office, Doug has been a key player in the branch’s success, thanks to his lead-by-example management style. “All of my favourite coaches in sports were all accomplished in that sport,” Doug recalls.
“All of my least-favourite coaches in sports were people who maybe hadn’t done those things themselves. You can pick it out pretty quickly.”
In his two decades of commercial real estate experience, Doug has coordinated over $3 billion to fund commercial construction, but you still won’t hear him trumpeting his own achievements. “I get a lot of satisfaction out of team wins, as opposed to individual wins,” Doug says. “It just means more when you have a bunch of people rolling in the same direction.”
When it comes to giving credit for his accomplishments, Doug recalls all the years he spent “in the minors,” learning the ropes of Canada’s commercial mortgage industry. Before earning his leadership role in Calgary, he spent several years as an investment analyst with Avison Young and then started with Canada ICI as a junior underwriter.
As Canada ICI Calgary forges on into the future, Doug Milne will be right there batting leadoff, coaching his team, and making awesome sports metaphors.