Can Corporate India learn from Mumbai Indians debacle?


Sports analogies have long been used in corporate world… Most have been about team, motivation and excellence. But is there a lesson to be learnt from the campaign disaster for Mumbai Indians?

The most expensive buy… A bunch of talented experienced and rookie players. A captain who is an icon and can supposedly make the nation come to a standstill with his performance… and yet they faltered… all the strategizing and planning amounting to nothing. Well actually something.. a spot above the other over hyped team called Kolkata Knight Riders!

How many times the corporates have made the same mistake. Get into a business… Believe that putting together the best management team with a highly visibility leader would take them to the top…

The best management consultants are called in for strategy and then the company goes nowhere… Rifts happen, leader is questioned… the consulting organization is not paid their fees and the whole project is stalled… I bet this would sound very familiar to many… it does to me because I been there… part of the team which just disintegrated.

How can a person who has been a great individual performer can ever be a leader. And especially when there has been a history of poor performance as the captain?

Too much  of strategy is also not a good thing. So many matches where one was left wondering if the Mumbai Indians had a strategy for winning or losing?

So many players were left wondering about their role…

And to top it all… the leader did not exactly set the field on fire now .. did he?

The lesson here for the corporates is that all that glitters is not gold. Environmental factors are far more important in deciding the strategy. And more importantly you need the right players in the right spot (not necessarily the best players)

And of course the biggest… the best performer is not necessarily the best leader. The fact is when the right team is in place, you dont need a leader even… Look at Delhi Daredevils – It didnt matter who was the captain… they kept winning. Because the thinktank had all the right ideas and the right people to exceute… Reputations did not matter… Imagine Glenn Macgrath warming the bench almost the entire tournament. I bet they will unleash him in the semi finals!

The point is that as an organization we cannot let primma donnas or past reputations dictate our decisions. Knowing who is right for what role is very important… Its the end objective that needs to define everything.

People who read this blog are welcome to add or rip the analogy apart…

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