On Your Business: Leadership Lessons from Ted Lasso

Ted Lasso, the hit show on Apple TV, embodies effective modern leadership (opens in new tab), people-centric management, and the value of humility and authenticity within a compelling, fictitious story. For those who are not familiar, Ted Lasso is recruited to be an English football (soccer) coach based on recent success coaching an American Division II college football team to a championship (a seemingly unrelated accomplishment). Despite his lack of knowledge of the game of soccer, unfamiliarity with the team he is coaching, and ignorance of the league and nuances of the sport, Ted leans on his attitude, people skills, management style (opens in new tab), and general approach to coaching athletes to gradually gain the respect of his players and the organization.

In business, many companies become fixated with metrics, quotas, and vanity statistics like top line revenue, growth percentage, and the size of an organization. Although it is misleading to think that the scoreboard doesn’t matter, Ted’s true measure of success for his team is about the reward of seeing his players overcome adversity, work together as a team (opens in new tab), support each other on and off the field, and enjoy playing the game. This is the mark of a true leader!

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