Last night was the launch of the Sir Alex Ferguson / Mike Moritz book “Leading” at the Royal Festival Hall in that there London. The whole evening was an amazing event, with the top of the footballing tree meeting the business world’s leading venture capitalist all being capably held together by the FT’s very own Editor in Chief Lionel Barber. It was without doubt rammed to the gunnels with MUFC fans and therefore he was playing to a very, very warm room. After an initial rousing round of applause there was a lull and voice rang out “Ooo arrr ya?!” and it broke the tension wonderfully. This ushered in almost two hours of sporting anecdotes, footballing legends names aplenty. Mike Moritz knew he was the straight man but made some really insightful comments, well you don’t invest in the likes of Linked In, You Tube and Facebook in the early days without getting a bit of business insight along the way.
All told it was an awesome evening and here are my top ten takeaways of the night…
10) Obsession drives success and the only way to be great is to make sacrifices
09) Embrace egos as it breeds the desire to win
08) Make the best available decision from the choices at the time
07) Leaders who remain curious help to keep things fresh, embrace change
06) Make the fans (customers) happy and send them home happy
05) Even if it is just 1% improvement I’d say “Right, lets do it”
04) Without testing and measuring how can you measure improvement?
03) Choose and trust young people
02) In business be consistent and remain consistent.
01) Delegate to the right people
This was all summed up for me by the one comment that stuck with me through out, when Sir Alex was asked about his attitude to early set-backs. “I wasn’t deterred because I knew I was right”
And I think that about sums it up, if you know yer right why wait about!