Ben Garside: Even if you’re the underdog, you can still become a winner!

Time 9:58 am, June 22, 2016

THIS year, Leicester City Football Club, also known as the Foxes, won the Premier League.

As a Derby fan, this doesn’t bring me any joy, but neither does it bring me too much displeasure. You could call them a rival, but to me, they’re just another local team.

However, taking a step back from the football, there are a lot of things that co-exist in our business market.

Let’s take a look at the way things have panned out for Leicester City and how they have gained their title.

The competitive underdog: Even after Christmas, they were sitting at the top of the league, but Leicester City were still seen as the underdog. Their competition, the press and even the public were always expecting them to slip up. They couldn’t grasp that a team that wasn’t in the usual top six (Manchester United, Chelsea, Arsenal, Manchester City, Tottenham or Liverpool) would be able to win the Premier League.

This worked in their favour, allowing them to focus on their own game rather than living up to the expectations of their past, having only ever won the second-tier League Title and League Cups in their history.

Training, development and people management: The team had been bought for a minuscule cost in comparison to the likes of Manchester United, Arsenal, Chelsea and Manchester City. However, the team was trained and developed correctly, and was allowed to make mistakes and express themselves.

Jamie Vardy was bought for just £1m from Fleetwood Town in 2012 and Leicester have just had a bid for £20m from Arsenal for him. Not every season has been great for Vardy, however.

In his first Premier League term, he found it hard to hit the back of the net, only scoring five times in 34 Premier League games. Through the right management and team structure, though, he was able to flourish – in the 2015/16 season, he scored 24 league goals.

Team spirit, drive and enthusiasm: At any point in the season, a downward spiral could have happened, but it didn’t. The team spirit was visible throughout the season and across the whole team.

Even when players were injured, the team still looked vibrant, working together with a drive to win.

Moral: Throughout the year, you could see that the team wanted to win; they wanted to be on that pitch. This is one thing that as a Derby fan I missed at certain times last season and this cost us our promotion.

If you want to succeed in business or football your employees/players need to be committed and happy.

So to round this up, if you want to win in the coming season, you can, even if you find yourselves labelled the underdog!

What you require is a good plan, strategy and structure. You also need a way of improving your team through training and development, and a management style that drives and motivates them to win.

Who is Ben Garside? Ben is marketing manager for First Response Finance. Call him on 07817 518739 or email [email protected]

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