I've had a personal email correspondence with Ted Leonsis for over ten years now.
Since 1999, when he bought the Washington Capitals from Abe Pollin--philanthropist, pillar of the community and mensch himself--Leonsis has dramatically raised the fortunes of his team, above all by connecting with fans, customers and clients alike, actively seeking input.
He asked fans for complaints about the team: about the game day experience, prices, parking, concessions, bathrooms--everything.
He compiled a list of 101 things fans didn't like, then systematically attacked those flaws, one by one.
That kind of enlightened ownership does more than sell tickets. After all, if the team weren't any good, there'd be empty seats every night.
What it does is gains permission. It gets buy-in. It buys patience and time and trust. Trust that things will be done right, that things will steadily improve. That these are shared values.
That "It's always about team, and there's always better."
Owner, President, General Manager, Coach and Visionary-in-Chief of
the enormously successful...
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