For the past weeks, everyone has lived and breathed football. As the world's most widely viewed sporting event, the FIFA World Cup 2018 is coming to an end, let us look back on what can learn from the world cup in business point-of-view. I know what you may be thinking, what has football to do with my business or me? Well, you might be surprised, but there are a few things that companies and businesses can learn from the world cup. Here, we present three lessons to be learnt and possibly applied to your business.
Always have a contingency plan
A contingency planning is a course of execution designed to execute on an unforeseen event or situation that may arise. It is often describe as a “Plan B” approach to use for action if things do not go your way. Russia is the best example in this prestigious tournament. They were playing against Spain, champions of both Euro 2012 and the FIFA World Cup 2014. The Spaniards were also among the top favourites to win this year with their sleek passing play and having one of the most talented rosters on paper while Russia was arguably one of the lowest ranking nation in the rankings. However, we know how the tables have turned in this match. Russia beat Spain by penalties after extra-time and this entire match boils down to the Russian coach executing his contingency plan to curb the damage that Spain has to cause.
Similarly, in business, we should always have a contingency plan if things do not go in our favour. Having a plan is better than not having a plan at all. Having a contingency plan could minimise the damage or loss of the company if unexpected negative things do occur; moreover, it is also easier to prevent any panic that may occur along the way. It is also important for management to go through the plan if any crisis occurs and make some adjustments and tweaks if the plans are not comprehensive enough. By instilling a contingency plan, planners are needed to evaluate all possible unforeseen outcomes and look at the bigger picture. Therefore, by having contingency plans for possible negative situations, you may minimise the damage for your brand or avoid big losses.
The saying “There is no I in team” often comes up in this topic and it is true as the World Cup has shown. The Greatest of All Time (GOAT) players such as Ronaldo and Messi bowed out early in this tournament, as they were unable to carry their team past the last 16 whereas nations such as Croatia and Sweden who played so cohesive as a team were able to advance to the quarterfinals.
It is a prime example that companies and entrepreneurs should observe how vital teamwork is and not to rely on just one individual to elevate the business. It is evident that many companies focuses primarily on retaining their top performing individuals by rewarding them with incentives and bonuses and not focusing on building a long-term vision of working togetherness. This system will create an uncomfortable and tense company environment where colleagues will less be likely to help each other, as they do not see each other as colleagues but more as competitors. Businesses should promote teamwork throughout their business culture and celebrate team achievements. Because in the end, alone we can do so little but together as a team, we can do so much more.
Being a leader of your nation is a big responsibility that not all are able to withstand, given constant pressure building up before every match. However, in this FIFA World Cup, we were able to see some leaders standout throughout the games. Granqvist from Sweden and Modric from Croatia are among the names that pop up in everyone’s mind. They both embodied the same leadership traits that have not gone unnoticed. Both of them embody similar skillsets, as both are hardworking (both were running tirelessly to help the team when it was necessary) and both were influential to motivate their peers during games.
As a leader in your company, you too should have these leadership traits because as the saying goes “teams will go far as their leaders can take them”. You need to know when it is the time to motivate your employees to go for that extra mile or even know how to assist them if things do not go right. Leaders are also the role models of the companies that many look up to internally and externally and if you do not portray yourself as a leader, you might not be able to get respect from your employees as they want leaders who can make them better and if you cannot offer that, respect is then lost. In addition, As South East Asia businesses are mostly built around relationship-based culture, it may jeopardise your business if your management leaders are not respected either.
In a nutshell, we have highlighted a few things that you can learn from the World Cup to help your business improve. Having a contingency plan, being a team player and showing your leadership capabilities are the things you can learn and pick-up easily to apply in your daily business and your working environment. We hope that this post is indeed helpful for you and if you are interested in reading more blogs like this, do subscribe to our newsletter by registering your name and e-mail address on the right or thru this link.