Moneyball and the Talent Mismatch Facing Business

By Tammy Johns, published by Harvard Business Review in september 2011

When I first read Moneyball: The Art of Winning An Unfair Game (the book that inspired the movie that opened this past weekend), I was struck by the similarities of the challenges that General Manager Billy Beane faced in 2002 to those that business employers face as they try to achieve the best returns on their talent investments. When Billy Beane took charge of the Oakland A’s he was tasked with building a winning team, but to do that he had to compete in the talent market against teams that could afford to pay players triple what his budget allowed. On top of that huge recruiting disadvantage, he recognized that the selection model teams were using was more than a century old.

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