The Winning Way by Harsha Bhogle and Anita Bhogle marries two fields which even though are very different, they share the same set of core attributes. Management and Sports do not seem to have any relation, but they share many common traits. Instead of me trying to explain, I’ll copy-paste part of the book’s synopsis:
What do sporting champions do, what makes winning teams, who is a good leader, why do only some teams keep winning while others win only for a while and then lose… The authors dig into examples from sport to see how they can benefit managers… Contrary to popular perception ability is not a major distinguishing factor in success, especially as the level of competition increases.
I have always stayed clear of management books, unless you count the autobiographers of industrialists and pioneers in their fields; I have never been able to enjoy those books as jargon, the heavy words often make the reading laborious. The Bhogles saw that there was a connection between sports and management, and there would rarely be a person who does not understand sports. And this management book borrowed the language of sports, and it is a very easy read.
Sports anecdotes are always fun, and in this book the authors take tales from Cricket, Tennis, Golf, and even Basketball at times among other sports and find a connect between attaining your goals, leadership, winning, sustaining the winning habit, and more importantly – losing. The Australian team of the past decade finds frequent references thanks to their incessant victories, Sachin Tendulkar is mentioned more times than any other individual (deservedly so), Martina Navratilova, Lance Armstrong, Pete Sampras, Steve Waugh, Bjorn Borg, Michael Jordon crop up frequently when the authors are talking about the successful brands and how they achieved their success.
Since I have never had the stomach for management books, I’ve to admit, that there were times when I was reading for the sports anecdotes instead of the management funda, but then I guess this is the aim of the authors – make people relate to sports and through that help gain insight for management.
The book’s subject is very different from Harsha Bhogle’s earlier book “Out of the Box”, but even this one is an equally engrossing read. Anyone who reads management books, must pick up The Winning Way.