Linda Hsu, over at Alpha Insight Development, kindly refers to Goal Play! lessons in her commentary entitled “Soccer, Leadership, and Empathy.” Excerpt:

My daughter’s soccer coach Paul Levy has written a book on leadership called Goal Play! Leadership Lessons from the Soccer Field.  It may seem a curious title for a book on leadership, but Paul draws on his experience turning around both the Massachusetts Water Resource Authority and Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center as well as his many years coaching girls’ soccer to explain his understanding of leadership and what it takes to create a work environment that is truly a successful team effort.

The most important point that Paul makes in the [last] chapter, though, is that “empathy between the leader and the team is the key element of [his] approach” to “creating an environment of respect for individual action and accomplishment.”  . . .  In the context of leadership, being willing to allow people who work for you to “hold themselves accountable to their own high standards” may mean letting go of your perceived control of your team and their actions and instead work to create an environment where learning can occur and mistakes can be made without fear of being perceived as incompetent.  In soccer as in life, as one of his employees notes, “it is how we handle them [mistakes] that makes us who we are.”