Winning Combination of Sports Teams - What HR can Learn

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The winning combination of great sports teams provides insights from which organizations and leaders can learn much.

These sports events include the World Cup, The Winter Olympics and The Summer Olympics.

A lot of thoughts and planning go toward winning at world sports events.

World Cup
For example, winning a World Cup requires a combination of good and effective management skills, superior players talents and teamwork. This makes the difference between winners and losers.

Football is one of human activities where effective talents management and teamwork will make the difference between winning the World Cup and going home dejected at the very start of this highly competitive sports event.

The World Cup 2010 provided a good example. Future world cups are no different.

South Africa hosts the World Cup 2010. It had spent million of dollars in preparation for this great event. Thirty two teams will compete. But only one team will win.

Predictions of which country will win the 2010 World Cup are fast coming in. Every country that makes it to South Africa hopes to lift the World Cup trophy, this thing that is made of solid gold. And the bookies are getting busy and will get even busier once the kicking starts. The media is also kicking up a frenzy. Apart from the euphoria and the hopes of 32 nations and the dismay of those whose teams will not travel to South Africa, do not forget all the important preparations that every team had made and is still making.

As in previous competitions, the road to the World Cup 2010 was not smooth and easy. It requires good management skills, extensive planning, effective teamwork and closely-guarded secrets how to win and become the champion. This is true of organizations. How is it this 2014 World Cup?

Management skill is not good enough if it does not include the ability to search for and identification of real talents, the effective management of players, and choice of capable officials among a host of other important things.

Time is of the essence in getting ready for the World Cup. It is never too early to start preparing for it. Preparation for a World Cup winning combination formula starts from the day after the last day of the last World Cup. The same will be true after the World Cup 2014. And future World Cups.

A Demonstration of Teamwork and Skills Management
The World Cup is of national concern for every nation. Winning results in accolades, fame and a fat purse.

Losing teams get the blames and heads will roll. They do not have a World Cup winning combination.

Team officials are required to demonstrate teamwork without exception. The only goal is winning. This aim is above individual members who must contribute to finding the best world cup winning combination.

With everyone working towards one particular goal, they can concentrate in managing players. Long before this, this would have involved scouting for the great talents to make up the final team.

The managers are not players. It is not advisable for them to manage and behave as if they are actually playing on the field. Let the players play. Let everyone do what each is good at doing.

Winning combination of talents, plans and teamwork

Great football skills are crucial. But these cannot win the World Cup. The players will head for home early if they do not play as a team.

If the players play the game the way they prefer, they will soon know that they will not make it.

Players need to listen to the coach and other team officials if they want to make it to the final group, if they want to embrace the World Cup trophy at the end of the competition.

As for the spectators watching the competitions from the stands or viewers watching the games from the comfort of their homes, they look forward to see the great skills of players such as Lionel Messi, and Christiano Ronaldo or the like of Pele or Maradona. Many will appreciate the way players click with each other on the field that results in goals.

The world Cup of 2014 replays all the preparations of the teams involve, the eventual departure of many due to dismal performance and the champion's bathing in the limelight.

Organizations must Learn from Sports Events
Similar things occur at the workplace.

Organizations and individuals can learn a lot from the World Cup, how teams make preparations for it, how teams win or lose.

Employees can learn to hone their skills just like Messi and Ronaldo who have honed their skills to a very high standard. Think of the skills of other great football players in years gone by.

Achieving the team goal is of paramount importance. This is true in football as at work.

Just like football players trying their best to get into the score sheet, managers and employees must not only work hard but smarter to ensure that the organization is always in the black.

Managing teams at the workplace is practically the same as managing a football team. Managers, coaches and players need to pull in the same direction. It is the same with top executives, managers, and the entire workforce.

In either case, talent management requires using more or less the same principles.

Failure to effectively manage talents and teams results in poor performance by organizations just as in football. When this happens, everybody suffers.

Ultimate Learning Point
It is fairly clear that the organizations and people can learn from the World Cup winning combination adopted by the ultimate winner and the runners up. And even the losers.

Managers can learn why some teams do not end up as winners at least at the beginning of the competition. They exit very early.

The ultimate learning point from world cup winning combination is that organizations can succeed to reach the highest possible level of performance.

This is not much different from organizational performance.

Organizations can learn from football clubs that they, too, may end up in bankruptcy and leave the market altogether. They may have an ineffective plan or their people do not act as a team in trying to attain the overall goals.

The strategies adopted by winning teams to prepare for competitive games such as the World Cup 2010 offer lessons for managers, executives and workers in general. The winner of the next World Cup - in Brazil - is determined in a similar way. HR people can gain more insights in the winning combination formula adopted by football teams.

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