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April 24, 2019

Why Manchester United Has Been One of the World’s Biggest Soccer Teams for Decades (And What Sales Professionals Can Learn)

When you think of soccer, there is a small selection of teams that instantly come to mind. Manchester United is often one of the first.

Manchester United has always achieved success. That's true from the Busby Babes era through to their dominance of the game under Sir Alex Ferguson. Even since Ferguson’s departure, they’ve continued to win trophies even while undergoing upheavals.

Here, I look at one of the reasons why.

They Have the Courage to Buck Trends

Soccer is often seen as a big money game. Teams buy the best players and they eventually achieve results.

Manchester United has been a part of this trend, of course. But they’ve also bucked it repeatedly over the years. Think about both the Busby Babes and Alex Ferguson eras. In both cases, the team relied on young players to inject energy and creativity into their performances.

And in both cases, analysts of the time thought it would be impossible for the team to win anything with “kids”.

Yet these were the two most successful periods in the club’s history.

Manchester United has the courage to do things differently from the established norms. Many will still claim that they “bought” their success. But the truth is that they’ve invested in youth where other teams buy more established players.

What can a sales professional learn from this?

It’s all about courage.

There are periods where the club has struggled to keep pace with its rivals. It’s only after changing their behaviours and focusing on youth that they achieved greater success.

Such a massive upheaval requires courage.

Think about how this applies to your career. You may find yourself struggling despite doing what everyone says you should do to be successful.

Buck the trend.

Have the courage to try new things and success is more likely to come your way.