Winners: And How They Succeed, by Alastair Campbell, 2015

The Gist

This is a portrait of individuals who have been winners in their careers. At the same time, it attempts to provide a formula for winning which is Strategy, Objective, Tactics. Campbell is a skilled communicator. He’s well networked. The stories and case studies of influencers and serial winners are brilliant: from Jack Welch to Floyd Mayweather to Elon Musk to Billy Beane and Tony Blair. They tumble out!

What’s Good

Despite a big ego and habitual name dropping – he turns a profile of Diego Maradona into a story of how he played with him – Campbell has lots of useful tips on the components of Strategy, Objective, Tactics as they are experienced in different walks of life. He is also very good at interviewing these same components. Some interviews are controversial. In our UEFA Pro Licence programme, Campbell rubbed up against Nemanja Vidic when discussing his interview with Eddie Rama, the Prime Minister of Albania.


Bill Clinton used to get up every day and focus entirely on what he alone could do. As you are seen to do so smile, even though you feel you’ve just swallowed a turd.

Something to Try

Try the rules of strategy – it’s not a strategy until it’s written down. You should be able to express it in a word, a phrase, a sentence, a paragraph, a speech and a book