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Caring, determined and brave.

Alyse LaHue shares her excitement about the future of the NWSL at the same time she is not shy to reflect on the need of having more women in the game.

Alyse embodies the story of a passionate and determined football fan who started as an intern and has already sat at the General Manager chair at Chicago Red Stars and, currently at Sky Blue, becoming one of the only two women at this level in the NWSL.

The same boldness which led her to accept the position of General Manager when, according to her, “I was never ready”, drove Alyse to co-found the youth non-profit organization Gonzo Soccer. A Girls Soccer & Leadership Academy that has developed programs in 13 different communities across 3 countries.

Here are the main takeaways from the interview:

  • Fan focus. Growing from a community-based and transparent approach allow clubs to make fans feel owners and proud of the jersey. Caring about attention and experience builds engagement, serving rather than selling.
  • NWSL. Entering year eight of the competition, there is plenty of room for creativity and pioneering strategies at this initial stage for all stakeholders. Every day is brand new, unveiling a bright future.
  • Women in leadership. There is big potential for women in high positions at a club and league level. “We are starting to see that, but we have to move quicker.”
  • Sky Blue. Focusing on improving towards a great future instead of past problems has made a huge difference, as moving to Red Bull Arena and creating a select-a-seat day experience.
  • Sponsors. Women’s sports offer a unique platform, with a fanbase that is slightly more populated by women. 86% of purchasing power is controlled by women, making the women’s game a great opportunity to connect with key decision-makers. “Don’t be a charity, show your ROI, sell passionately.”
  • Boldness. “I was never ready to be a General Manager. If you have the opportunity, you should take it, being ready to take the leap and to make lots of mistakes.”
  • Jobs. See every opportunity to deliver your best work as a chance to develop a specific skill. “Be willing to try the jobs you might not want to do, each one will set a new foundation for your career.”

Detail orientation, empathy and innovation are at the core of the business approach and culture she seeks to establish at Sky Blue. In less than a year, the team has moved its home stadium to the impressive Red Bull Arena, top players as Mallory Pugh and Margaret Purce have arrived and season ticket base has doubled.

Priceless tips and insights ahead. You can enjoy the full interview here:

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