Managing Expectations

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  • 02 Mar 2017

    The Leicester City problem

    Last week’s sacking of Leicester City manager Claudio Ranieri evoked an understandably fervent response. Many felt that having won the league, the Italian deserved the opportunity to continue his tenureship, while others simply felt that in a results business he had failed to assure the club that he was still the right man for the […]
  • 29 Sep 2016

    The early indicators

    In the opening weeks of the season, it is desperately difficult to gauge the state of affairs. Not only are new players settling in, the skew of the fixture calendar can make some teams appear better or worse than they are.We can use two composite metrics to give us an early sense of how well […]
  • 04 Aug 2016

    The next 10 months

    Grab a pen and write down, in order, your predicted end-of-season table. Do it again next week, after one round of results, and again the following week, and so on until May.August is the obvious time to be setting targets, but it needn’t stop on day one. Take the example of Watford last season.Before […]
  • 10 Mar 2016

    The meaning of aggression

    Professional sport is full of buzzwords and banalities, perhaps the most common of which is the demand to be “positive” or “aggressive” in one’s approach. Indeed, men’s tennis’ world number two Andy Murray spoke about this type of analysis last week: A lot of commentators say you have to be more aggressive. Does that mean you […]
  • 01 Oct 2015

    The smart boardroom…

    Sets the right pre-season expectations, based on the right metrics.Implements long-term strategies, rather than relying on short-term tactics.Creates accountability around the club’s philosophy, to ensure that progress and success is measured against relevant KPIs.Recognises the importance of measuring performance, not only results. Knows that wage bill doesn’t automatically = success, and that innovation can often […]
  • 06 Aug 2015

    The outside view

    In the brilliant book Thinking Fast and Slow, author Daniel Kahneman recalls a time when he assembled an expert team to write a textbook designed to teach judgement and decision making in high schools.As part of the process, Kahneman asked everyone in the team to write down an estimate of how long it would take […]
  • 05 Jun 2015

    Summer reading

    The season has ended for many teams around the world, and our Evolution blog will also be taking  post-season break. Over the last 10 months, we’ve been sharing our own thoughts and ideas as to how football clubs can achieve competitive edge and build sustainable success. Broadly, our blogs have focused on talent management, future […]
  • 27 May 2015

    Did you exceed expectations?

    In August, we presented a framework to set expectations for the new season.Instead of setting a league position benchmark, we suggested clubs set a points benchmark to assess themselves against in May (or December, for many Scandinavian and American clubs). The reasoning followed that whilst league position is sometimes at the mercy of rivals’ form, […]