Thoughtful and intentional. Those are the key ingredients to the success new Vikings General Manager Kwesi Adofo-Mensah hopes to bake up in Minnesota.
"Our approach to building this roster will be intentional, thoughtful, thorough and detailed, well planned," Adofo-Mensah said during his introductory press conference on Thursday. "We know the destination. It's the same success and championships for these fans. We know how to get there, it's just having the willingness, the wherewithal and the confidence to make those decisions and stay on the right path."
Immediately after his press conference, Adofo-Mensah said he was due to meet with the Vikings' leadership council and listen to feedback about the good, bad and the ugly about the organization. The 40-year-old from Cherry Hill, New Jersey, who has eight years of NFL experience under his belt, said he'll looking to collaborate and build consensus ahead of every key decision the team makes under his watch.
"When you think about this job, the job is about making decisions, building consensus in the building," he said. "Along those lines, I don't think there's many more people qualified than I am."
Adofo-Mensah confirmed that he's been involved in "some initial discussions" about the head coach vacancy, adding that he'll be looking for someone who has intangibles that go beyond football knowledge.
"We know what we want to find. We want leadership. We want somebody that's going to rally the collective over the individual. We want somebody who's got vision, who can communicate, who's got a solid football foundation, who understands how football is interconnected and what that means. That's been our focus in our last few days, really honing in on what we want," Adofo-Mensah said.
Asked if he'll be making all roster decisions, the former Wall Street trader whose original plan was to become an economics professor, said he doesn't make decisions without first scouring every possible detail and listening to every viewpoint.
"A coach that I would work with, I would work for," he said. "It's somebody that I would want to partner with. I don't care about that distinction (roster decisions) because they understand enough about personnel and about living in today and living in tomorrow that would make us a great partnership."
During his six seasons in the front office of the San Francisco 49ers, Adofo-Mensah said he learned from Hall of Fame coach Bill Walsh.
"Thoughtful and intentional. That's kind of what I got from Bill Walsh. I don't think there's been anybody in the history of the sport that has been more thoughtful and intentional than him. The detail that he planned practice and what he was trying to get out of it. Every letter of that organization had a reason why. In our interviews I spoke a lot out 'that's how I'm wired, that's who I am.' I don't think you change for the sake of change, but I think you ask why a lot," Adofo-Mensah explained.
"Football philosophy-wise, he knew that you couldn't just line up and expect to win every week. So he created a system that gave his players the best chance to win. Ultimately, there's lots of ways to do that and as we get into the coaching search we'll discuss those things. But there's a way to give your payers an advantage week in, week out, year in and year out. There's a way to be process driven and process oriented to kind of figure out how to evolve. And that's the kind of thing we're looking for and that's the kind of thing Coach Walsh instilled upon me."