What can we learn from Barcelona and Iniesta? by Catriona Cookson

Staying with the football theme, I was interested to read an article by Gianpiero Petriglieri, Associate Professor of Organisational Behaviour,at INSEAD about Andres Iniesta’s Farewell match at Barcelona . Iniesta joined Barcelona when he was 12 and was leaving 22 years later having won more trophies than any other player in Spanish history. He’s gone on to play in this World Cup and is off to Japan for the next chapter in his career.

Gianpiero considers that in the modern workplace we are all potentially always on the move, in a state of liminality (yes, a new word for me too), where we are always betwixt and between. And, if we are to be more flexible in the workplace, with multiple moves in our careers, then we and the organisations we work for need to become much better at endings. I’d guess most people would want to be a “good leaver” from one role to the next, and how organisations as well as individuals manage this is key. Today’s leaver could be tomorrow’s client – many consulting firms have wisened up to the power of their alumni network and the opportunities this brings.

And once again the beautiful game comes up with a beautiful story of Barcelona keeping the stadium open for Iniesta until he decided to leave at 1am, when it would earn no money, sell no shirts or win any points ….to allow a great player a moment of solitude and reflection…..and that beautiful picture!



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