5 Lessons in Leadership

Updated: Feb 9, 2021

Welcome to the BSB Facilitators Blog! Every month or so, we post something new here. We include ideas from all four of our areas of training, book reviews, ideas to consider, and other thoughts. We will have a little fun with this and share some meaningful and useful ideas.

Judy and Phil just finished watching a television show called “Ted Lasso.” They both thought it was exceptionally well written. If you have not seen it, we recommend it highly. The basic premise of the show is that Ted, an American football coach, is hired by the owner of a football (soccer) team in England. The owner hired him to fail. Ted is clearly a fish out of water when he takes over the team. The team, and the rest of the cast, is excellent.

Ted has a long way to go to win over the team, the town, and achieve at least some measure of success.

His leadership style is a little unusual, and has caught the attention of many people, organizational leaders and academics included. If you Google “Lasso Leadership Lessons,” you will get a lot of hits (over 800,000) including Forbes Magazine, Harvard, religious groups, entrepreneurship, coaching, and a wide range of other sites.

Here is a summary from an article by Helen Thomas:

1. A capable and inspiring leader does not need to be a subject matter expert.

It’s not so hard to connect the dots to real life: someone who is aware of their knowledge gaps, willing to listen, and take advice will quickly become a trusted and inspiring leader, as opposed to someone who walks into a new situation thinking they know more than everyone around them.

2. Be confident, but release yourself from your ego and trust your people.

I love this analogy of strong, motivating leadership. Ted, acknowledging his lack of soccer expertise, does not try to bluff or assert himself. (How many examples of this do we encounter every day? In business? In politics?) Instead, he seeks the advice of someone he recognizes as a close observer of the team and then confidently backs his decision in spite of significant opposition.

3. Always be curious, not judgmental.

This is an important life and leadership lesson because as we grow and know more, it’s easy to fall into the trap of thinking we know enough. This is never true.

4. A successful team needs a diversity of talent and experience.

An experienced leader or a team superstar on their own does not create an effective, sustainable team.

5. Kindness, compassion and empathy are underrated leadership values.

The show is a reminder that positivity, kindness and compassion can deliver professional and personal success.

We recommend watching “Ted Lasso!” It is entertaining, moving, and filled with examples of leadership behavior that you can apply every day!