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Two-Day Visit from the Swedish Golf Association at the Stockholm School of Economics

On March 21th and 22th, the Swedish Golf Association spent two days at the Stockholm School of Economics. For many years, the Swedish Golf Association has been a partner to the Center for Sports and Business.

This two-day education module focused on managing hybrid organizations and started with a lecture by SSE President Lars Strannegård. Focusing on his latest book "Senses of Knowing - a celebration of the pursuit of knowledge", President Strannegård discussed SSE's educational mission FREE and how the school wants to educate students who are "free and alive in relation to the unknown". In a world that is characterized by artificial intelligence, big data, and fake news, critical thinking and interpersonal relationships will be more important than ever. FREE stands for:

  • Fact and Science-based mindset
  • Reflective and self-aware
  • Empathetic and culturally literature
  • Entrepreneurial and responsible

SSE President Lars Strannegård holding a presentation for participants from the Swedish Golf Association in the Heckscher-Ohlin Room

After a tour of SSE, the afternoon was spent discussing the challenges of hybrid organizations. The Swedish Golf Association is both a strong membership-based organization with over 500,000 members, but also an organization where commercial activities are important. The participants in the educational module work as advisors to the over 400 golf courses in Sweden. As such, they help local golf clubs balance the non-for-profit and commercial logic. 

On the second day, the main activity was to do a field trip to Save the Children's Sverige (Rädda Barnen). Ola Mattsson, Director of Save the Children's Growth Hub hosted the visit at the Head Quarter in Alvik, west of Stockholm City. Similar to the Swedish Golf Association, Save the Children is also a hybrid organization. In order to develop new processes, business models, and donor relations, the Growth Hub is created to innovate and experiment. Ola Mattsson talked about the importance of daring to fail, but also how successful innovations are implemented in the line organization of Save the Children. 

Field Trip to Save the Children. Ola Mattson, Director of Growth Hub, holding a presentation

From a Center perspective, doing a field trip to a non-sport organization was new. It highlighted the many similarities that exist between the two sectors but also gave inspiration and new ideas for how the Swedish Golf Association could develop. 

Reflecting upon the two-day module, Martin Carlsson-Wall says:

"It was great to mix theory and practice during these two days. All participants from the Swedish Golf Association generously shared their experiences. It was clear that there are many similarities across the golf courses, but also that local adaptations are critical to achieving success. From a hybrid organization perspective, it was really interesting to visit the Save for Children Growth Hub, but also to realize that a business school is a hybrid between "business" and "school". I really look forward to continuing and deepening our relationship with the Swedish Golf Association."

Sports and Business