As an avid supported of Liverpool Football Club it is hard for me to read about the success of Manchester United during the last 30 years. However, my intrigue into what makes a great Leader takes over and I find Harvard's Case Study on what made Alex Ferguson successful an impressive read.
From laying solid foundations via his youth system and the preparation he put into everything to his relentless work ethic and clearly looking 4 years beyond the current season it is clear that he was a pioneering Leader and up there with the best of his peers. His ability to predict what how he needed to change his squads every four years and even more the fact that he won 5 league championships with 5 different squads is impressive.
My one question is whether Ferguson's autocratic style is one that would woo the upcoming millenial footballers. Would today's foootballers respond in the same way to Ferguson's leadership approach as Giggs, Neville and Scholes did?
Some call him the greatest coach in history. Before retiring in May 2013, Sir Alex Ferguson spent 26 seasons as the manager of Manchester United, the English football (soccer) club that ranks among the most successful and valuable franchises in sports. During that time the club won 13 English league titles along with 25 other domestic and international trophies—giving him an overall haul nearly double that of the next-most-successful English club manager. And Ferguson was far more than a coach. He played a central role in the United organization, managing not just the first team but the entire club. “Steve Jobs was Apple; Sir Alex Ferguson is Manchester United,” says the club’s former chief executive David Gill. In 2012 Harvard Business School professor Anita Elberse had a unique opportunity to examine Ferguson’s management approach.