Well Leicester City pulled a surprising one and now Gary Lineker has to honour some commitments he made. I’m not a massive football fan but even I can enjoy a good Cinderella story, mainly because this demonstrates that talent and teamwork can overcome lavish spending. It’s nice to see that a bit of optimism doesn’t always hurt and can get some nice solid results out of it. One challenge for the optimist is that people will say that’s all well and good but in the real world where does that get you? Well, in this case it seemed to get them the Premiere Trophy (at least I think it’s a trophy from my limited football knowledge).
I have no doubt that their success will be made into a documentary and maybe even turned into a movie at some point. The triumph of a team that collectively cost less than some of the simple players from the major teams is clearly inspiring because that means there is more than just funding involved, it takes investment of effort to make a success. While in this case funding does seem to be the major reason for succeeding (Leicester has only won once after all) it demonstrates that possibly there has been over spend and that utilising other key elements means that a project can be successful for less.
If you take a football team and see it as a work project, compare the funding given and it becomes clear that the other “projects” are sponging up expenses. It is clear to all project managers that there is never one factor that makes a project a success, it is a combination that brings it forth. One reason why humans are so brilliant at this is because they are a merge of so many factors like talents, hobbies and ambition; now if you put a group of people together all these factors are multiplied and you now have a vast intricate team to make that project with.
An employee is more than just their job title, they have families, cultures and a distinct personality that adds to the mix. This takes the traditional view of an employee as an isolated person that leaves their life at the door and makes them a multiple dimension being. With the merge of work and life this change isn’t much of a surprise but the question is whether your organisation is prepared to embrace those dimensions that that person is made up of.
Particularly as we know these people will be working with equally complex people, is effort being made to look past the job title and see the 3D employee in your organisation? This can be done in several ways, measuring personality, identifying suitable colleagues, aligning values of the organisation and making considerations for the work-life balance. Once these things are understood funding can start to be invested into the right areas as opposed to just being given and hoping for the best. Putting the effort in to understanding where the demand is and satisfying it will result in a return in investment.
Of course, this is no easy task. People change as do organisations and it would need to be a continuous process. Targeting the right areas will make it a smoother process in the long run and it might develop a culture for continuous success that requires less effort with time. That said everyone must face a choice between doing what is right and what is easy when it comes to making a change and despite the challenges that were clearly in front of them, Leicester City did what was right.
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