The Failure of Committees

The buck stops here

The deflationary spiral in Europe has been eclipsed by that on Merseyside, as hopes of Champions league football and an FA Cup final have ended with a whimper. There are few positives to take in terms of assessing the outlook for a squad that looks bereft of what Alex Ferguson might call “top top” talent.

There is one main takeaway from Liverpool’s season that I think is also relevant to the investment world, the failure of the committee structure for decision making. Yes, they sound great when investment companies are eulogising on “the process”, but I believe they can only really be used as a working group, to support the main decision maker.

As the yanks say, the buck has to stop somewhere and the committee structure can often obscure accountability. Since July 2012, Liverpool’s transfer committee, made up of five individuals including current manager Brendan Rodgers, have spent £211,550,000 (plus agent fees) on twenty-four players, none of which would make the Chelsea team.

Perhaps, the most damning reflection of Liverpool’s transfer committee was the three overpaid strikers on the bench yesterday, with a winger leading the line. Someone has to be held accountable for these transfer failings. Bernie Madoff would have made better use of the money!

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