From the Ballfield to the Boardroom: Management Lessons from Sports

From the Ballfield to the Boardroom: Management Lessons from Sports

From the Ballfield to the Boardroom: Management Lessons from Sports

From the Ballfield to the Boardroom: Management Lessons from Sports

Synopsis

Using dozens of examples from across the spectrum of professional and college sports, Brian Goff analyzes the ways in which key decisions are made on the playing fields and locker rooms and applies these lessons to the corporate context. The result is an incisive look at the sport of business, with practical insights for successful management at all levels of your organization.

Excerpt

Economists have long studied companies, but for decades nearly all of their energy was devoted to examining topics such as pricing behavior, antitrust policy, and industry-level comparisons. What went on inside of firms was of secondary interest to what came out of them such as profits, market share, and industry concentration. Starting in the 1960s, attention slowly began to turn to a better understanding of decision making within organizations. At first, this work took place in isolated pockets, appearing in separate journal articles and pieces of analysis disconnected from each other. Labor economists looked at incentives. Financial economists along with mathematical theorists looked at uncertainty, risk, and information. Political economists developed models and statistical studies related to legislative and bureaucratic organizations. Game theorists looked at strategic situations. Researchers in developing areas such as law and economics and newly forming areas of “organizational” economics considered corporate governance structures, contracts, transactions costs, and other topics. Over time, these separate pieces of organizational economics began to be integrated with each other so that books for studying organizations and management from economic perspectives started to emerge.

The same kinds of developments have occurred in the economic study of sports. From the 1950s through the 1970s, a few landmark studies cropped up such as Simon Rottemberg's examination of free agency and Gerald Scully's statistical investigation of value of Major League Baseball (MLB) players to their teams. During the 1980s and 1990s, the number of studies of sporting activities and leagues rose dramatically including topics such as racial discrimination, the NCAA, sports stadiums, and many others so that now the field supports specialized journals and textbooks.

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