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The business of football
Study this free course
Enrol to access the full course, get recognition for the skills you learn, track your progress and on completion gain a statement of participation to demonstrate your learning to others. Make your learning visible!
Welcome to this new free OpenLearn course produced by The Open University working in partnership with The Football League Trust, the educational arm of The Football League. If you are fascinated by football and interested in discovering more about business and management then this engaging and stimulating free course which provides the opportunity to share and comment on your learning with others is for you. You can progress at your own pace and it will take a minimum of around 9 hours of your time to complete the course.
In the following video Eleanor Oldroyd from BBC Radio 5 Live explains a little more about the topics you’ll examine.
During this interactive course you investigate three main themes. First is the nature of the football business. You'll look at clubs, particularly those beyond the Premier League, exploring how their business model might differ from other industries. You draw on academic perspectives and interviews with those working in football at both a traditional club, Chesterfield, and a newer one, MK Dons, to consider different income streams and clubs' internal and external decision making environments.
The second theme focuses on employees' motivation at work and the dynamics of working in a team. Interviews with professional footballers and club employees are used to illustrate some of the complexities that the research reveals. You will consider how to nurture an effective motivational and team climate.
The final theme is globalisation and power relationships in football and in business. You will examine the commercial and global expansion of the game and how different dimensions of power are used in football and other businesses.
After completing this course you will be able to:
- begin to understand the business of football and the internal and external business environment of football clubs
- identify factors most likely to motivate people to succeed in their work in different parts of the football business including leaders and managers influence on the working environment
- describe what makes teams more likely to succeed and how individuals can develop into more effective teams
- reflect on the meaning of globalisation and how this relates to the business of football
- identify how dimensions of power relate to football.
Record of achievement
By enrolling on this course you can track your progress and gain a Statement of Participation for completing the whole course.
About The Football League Trust
The Football League (FL) is based in England and Wales and is the world's original league football competition. The 72 member clubs make it the largest single body of professional clubs in European football. The FL celebrated its 125th anniversary in 2013.
The Football League Trust is a registered charity that governs, advises and audits the charitable trusts associated with the professional clubs of The Football League, who have a combined annual turnover of over £44 million, and 2,500 members of staff, including teachers, coaches, professional health and social workers and many others to tackle community challenges.
Using the 'Power of Football', The Trust continues to flourish, delivering life improving projects, which engage with over 1.5 million people per year, focusing on education, sport, inclusion and health.
Creative Commons: The Open University is proud to release this free course under a Creative Commons licence.
However, any third-party materials featured within it are used with permission and are not ours to give away. These materials are not subject to the Creative Commons licence. See terms and conditions and our FAQs.
Full copyright details can be found in the Acknowledgements section of each week.
Copyright & revisions
Originally published: Tuesday, 23rd June 2015
- Creative-Commons: The Open University is proud to make this course freely available under a Creative Commons licence. This does not include some third-party and certain other content as may be stated in our Acknowledgement pages and/or elsewhere in the course. These are not released under the Creative Commons licence. Full details can be found in the Acknowledgements sections and our FAQs.
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