Leadership the Sven-Göran Eriksson Way

How to Turn Your Team Into Winners

Julian Birkinshaw, Stuart Crainer, 2004, Capstone

I must say, I only bought this book, because I had a big loud laugh, when I saw that someone based a leadership book on the guy, who made himself a complete pariah with different affairs during his time as England’s manager culminating in his demission, because he believed a journalist, pretending to be a sheik, that he would be the new manager of Aston Villa after an Arab takeover. Eriksson even promised the sheik to bring David Beckham from Real Madrid to the club to build a team around him.
Now, I have to admit, I think Eriksson was a decent and successful manager before the England job, even during it, but at some point during that time he must have lost the contact to the real world. Others might learn humility during this events but it seemed for him nothing was good enough afterwards, so every job after, was always shorter than the one before.
The book itself is a standard manager/leadership book. The “Swedish method” is explained, which means it is described, what is standard today anyhow, but maybe has not arrived at all soccer clubs yet: Keeping a balance between individualism and collectivism, keeping flat hierarchies, be flexible, do not order but convince, keep problems to solve simple, accept failure and learn from it.
Of course all this is connected to Eriksson’s successes, to give it credibility, but in the end you could also choose another modern successful manager to provide these insights.
It is an easy read and you learn something about the biography of Eriksson but it is not must read, except you want to learn about management of teams.

Biography: 2/3
History: 1/3
Background: 2/3
Tactics & Game philosophy: 0/3

Must read for: No One >> Fans of Managing literature >> Soccer fans >> All readers


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