Roy Hodgson should have brushed up on some tips and tricks about how to manage client expectations this week. The client being, in this case, our country’s ever-optimistic football fans. England’s humiliating crash out of Euro 2016 to underdogs Iceland should come as no surprise to a country that has only won 6 games since 1996 in knockout rounds of international football. Expectations were unrealistic.
Iceland, in comparison, probably had no expectations whatsoever, therefore can only be pleasantly surprised with their progress.
In video production, managing the expectations of the client is an offensive tactic; it’s scouting the opposition. The rules of the game should be quickly established. They should be easy to follow with no nasty surprises on either side. Budgets and schedules should be discussed first and agreed. Everyone should have realistic expectations of what can be achieved with the available budget. For £5,000, there will be no blockbuster explosions and mind-blowing CGI. What can be expected is a well-managed schedule, a strong narrative and engaging content for the agreed audience.
If Roy Hodgson had set the tone for the squad and the fans, then maybe the disappointment would not have been so bitterly felt. The team were, from the offset, an attacking side with a decidedly lacking midfield and unprotected back four. They were also the most junior team the country has bought to a tournament for 58 years. Why not afford the England squad the opportunity to grow together before expecting the world in a cup?
Perhaps Roy Hodgson should have stood up and said: ‘The best we can hope for is the semi-finals, we’re out-matched in talent, experience and commitment. Knockout stages are the limit of this sides capabilities. However, this is an opportunity for new recruits and burgeoning talent to find their fit as a team, really test their metal and improve, hopefully towards being future winners.’
Would we still be disappointed at England’s performance had he said that? Probably. But Roy might still have a job. Anticipating issues and challenges in producing a video and managing the expectations of what the client will get will lead to a better working relationship and an outcome that will be pleasing to all.
For England, unless the manager who succeeds Roy is more pragmatic and more open to dealing honestly with the challenges he has, 50 years of hurt will turn into 60 and maybe even 70.
Maybe someone from the England camp should make an internal communications video about it? Tallboy is available and at a very competitive price, Mr. Allerdyce.