Sports aficionados are known to call their favorite team’s owner many names, and rarely do they refer to them as smart. As an ardent sports fan, you no doubt keep up to date with your favorite teams’ progress throughout the year. You also probably have a lot to say on who should own, run or coach your team to sweet success.
In spite of the sometimes acrimonious relationship team owners may have with their teams and fans, these businesspeople play an important role in the team’s success. They make crucial business and financial decisions on behalf of the team, that can either propel them forward or drag them to certain doom. However, it would be naïve to imagine that all of them have made what could be termed as smart decisions.
In order for a team to be successful, there needs to be a smooth relationship between the owner, the general managers and the coaches. Think of your favorite team and the ones that have consistently ranked at the top of the scoreboards and you will see that this is true. If the owners cannot relate well to the coaches, managers and even the team, then it is highly unlikely that the club will do well.
There are different kinds of team owners. There are some who take an active interest in their club’s performance – take Bucks owner Wesley Edens, for example. He is both financially and emotionally invested in his team. Other than going to games and interacting with fans, he is genuinely interested in the players. He has even made the effort of giving his players financial advice on how to handle their finances and grow their wealth. This is a man who is dedicated to seeing his whole team succeed, both on and off the court.
There are other club owners who are content to simply see their clubs as a financial investment. They are content to take a backseat role and let someone else make all the decisions. They treat their team players as little more than property. This is definitely the wrong approach to take as it can severely damage the team’s chances of success. It can also strip the authenticity and passion from the team. The players won’t feel motivated if their owner only sees them as a source of finances and not as people.
The owner of a team needs to have the ability to balance good business and financial decisions with smart and practical ones that will drive the team forward. He needs to have an open line of communication with the players, their managers and their coaches. Meeting the players, creating rapport with them and showing up for their games can go a long way towards motivating the team.
Do you know what else he needs to do? Connect with his team’s fans. A smart team owner understands that fans are a team’s lifeblood. He goes out of his way to listen to their concerns, understand their needs and galvanize them around the team.
Great teams are not made overnight. They require everyone to put in their best, from the owner right through to the fans.