Nine management lessons from soccer

Mourinho is considered to be a top coach. Still Real Madrid was defeated by Barcelona in the Champions League. Conclusion? The influence of a manager (coach) is grossly overrated (1) and it does make a big difference if you have a player like Messi in your team (2). Results of soccer teams are influenced by a heterogeneous set of factors, like team play, focus, intuition, the quality of players, but also of the reserves and sometimes even plain luck. Still, businesses can learn from soccer. For example to accept that intuition is a powerful weapon (the book Blink by Gladwell is solely based on that). That simplicity is more effective than complexity. That results of a team is not only based on eleven players, but also on reserves, trainer, and so on. I had this mind map for quite some time, but was triggered to put it on my blog with the publication of the book A top manager plays 4-4-2 (Eburon, the Netherlands). Whereas 4-4-2 (a formation with 4 defenders, 4 midfielders and two forwards) is the most widely used formation in soccer today, I would rather (translating tactics to businesses) use the very old-fashioned 2-3-5 played in the first half of the 20th century for businesses. Putting departments like product development (innovation), marketing & communications, customer service and sales in the front line of the organisation.

About Hans Buskes

I am a professional mindmapper, I help companies map their business, I am author of two mindmap books. My clients are law firms, municipalities, banks, consultancies and high-tech companies.
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