Learning from Ted Lasso Can Make You a Better Leader

After not posting for a while, I’m back! Lots of major life changes at once will slow down any blogger, but I am excited to be writing again. I have been saving drafts of posts for a while now, so expect a lot of content on leadership, innovation, and how we treat each other coming your way.

Ted Lasso is also back and I am ready to “Believe” along with the characters on the show.

In a world where leaders are often characterized by their cutthroat nature and insatiable thirst for power, it’s refreshing to see a character like Ted Lasso. Coach Lasso teaches us that leadership is not about being the most dominant or feared figure, but rather about being vulnerable, empathetic, and understanding. There is a lot to learn from Ted Lasso about being an effective leader. I have tried to adapt some of his messages and apply these leadership methods and philosophies to my own life.

If you have not completed season 2 of the show, I would encourage you to go to another part of this site, like perhaps this reading list, watch the show and then come back. In other words, this is your SPOILER ALERT:

Here’s a few things we can learn about leadership from the show so far:

The Role of Vulnerability in Ted Lasso’s Leadership Style

One of the defining features of Ted Lasso’s leadership style is his willingness to be vulnerable. From the very first episode of the show, we see that Ted is not afraid to show his emotions and share his personal struggles with his team. In one scene, when asked how he’s doing, Ted responds, “I’m doing great, but I’m also a little overwhelmed, and I’m scared, but I’m excited, too. It’s a weird feeling.”

Lead like Ted Lasso on and off the pitch

By sharing his own vulnerability, Ted creates a safe space for his team to do the same. He encourages his players to open up and share their own struggles, creating a culture of trust and mutual support. This vulnerability not only strengthens the bond between Ted and his team, but it also creates a more compassionate and empathetic workplace.

In season 2, Ted finds his way back to vulnerability when he reveals that he had a panic attack during one of AFC Richmond’s games. He admits to the team that he wasn’t completely honest and apologizes. Ted says, “Y’all found out about something
from somewhere, when you should’ve found out about it from me first. But I chose not to tell y’all, and that was dumb…Now, I hope y’all can forgive me for what I’ve done. ‘Cause I sure as heck wouldn’t want any of y’all to hold anything back with me.”

By admitting the mistake he made in not being honest, Ted is being vulnerable by asking for forgiveness. This action only strengthens his bond with his players.

The Use of Colloquialisms and Its Positive Impact

Another important aspect of Ted Lasso’s leadership style is his use of colloquialisms. Ted often uses folksy sayings and expressions that may seem out of place in a professional setting, but they serve a purpose. Ted’s colloquialisms create a shared language that unites his team and helps them feel like they’re all in this together. When Ted tells his team, “be a goldfish,” he’s reminding them to let go of mistakes and move forward. When he says, “it’s the hope that kills you,” he’s preparing them for the possibility of failure while encouraging them to keep trying.

These colloquialisms not only create a shared language but also help his team to stay motivated and focused. By providing a clear and memorable message, his team can quickly recall and apply those lessons, in both their professional and personal lives. The colloquialisms also serve as “Inside jokes” that only the team shares, creating small shared experiences and strengthening the team’s bond.

Ted Lasso’s Relationship with Coach Beard

Perhaps the most important factor that makes Ted Lasso an effective leader is his relationship with his assistant coach, Coach Beard. Ted and Coach Beard have a deep understanding and mutual respect for one another, which allows them to work together in a way that brings out the best in each other.

In one episode, Ted tells Coach Beard, “I need you. I need you to keep me calm, keep me focused, keep me sane.” By acknowledging that he needs his assistant coach, Ted sets an example for his team, showing that leadership is not about being perfect, but rather about building a strong team that supports one another.

Ted’s relationship with Coach Beard also shows that effective leadership is not a solo venture. It requires a team of people who can rely on each other and work together towards a common goal. In the end, Ted’s relationship with Coach Beard makes him a better coach, and it ultimately leads to the team’s success bringing them back to the Premier League.

The character of Ted Lasso teaches us that leadership is not about being the most dominant or feared figure, but rather about being vulnerable, empathetic, and understanding. Ted’s willingness to be vulnerable, his use of colloquialisms to create a shared language, and his strong relationship with Coach Beard are just a few of the strategies that make him an effective leader. By following in Ted’s footsteps, we can all become better leaders, creating workplaces that are more compassionate, empathetic, and successful.

Key Takeaway

Ted Lasso, the titular character of the hit TV show, is a model for effective and transformational leadership. Key takeaways include the importance of vulnerability in leadership, the positive impact of using colloquialisms to create a shared language, and the power of building strong relationships within a team.


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