top of page
  • Writer's pictureTim Jones

Biscuits with the Boss, Believing in the power of the table at work.

There’s about three hundred things to love about Ted Lasso, the Emmy-winning TV show and cast of characters who single-handedly gave us a glimmer of hope when it launched during that dark first year of Covid.

Attesting to the hundreds of YouTube vides on Ted Lasso leadership qualities, tips and insights – this show gave the gift of a glimpse inside what so many of us secretly desire in our workplace – people who believe business is best served when we fearlessly embrace our humanity with one another.

Human first. Business second.

A defining ritual created by our hero Ted begins, perhaps as a dig on British culture – as he attempts to bake biscuits for his boss.

As he perfects his technique, the biscuits get better and better – and soon, Rebecca’s favorite time of the day is with Ted, tea and biscuits.

On one level – biscuits with the boss is a cute and endearing gesture from the dearly-loved character of Ted.

On a much deeper level, Ted creates a daily ritual around food that leads to an incredibly sustaining, liberating and life-giving friendship, with each discovering one of their greatest allies and confidants in the ups and downs of business, as well as their personal lives.

Eating together changes everything.

1. Eating together acknowledges our humanity over our job title. We are no longer ‘Ted the coach’ with all of the expectations to perform, but we learn, Ted is a kind man who is working through a separation with his wife while trying to be the best dad he can be to his son a thousand miles away. There is work – futbol practice, drills, gym workouts, etc., but then there is being human. We are human first, workers second.

2. Eating together creates camaraderie. Trust and friendship is created when we eat together. You don’t eat with people you don’t trust. And you certainly don’t eat homemade biscuits or lasagna or potato salad from someone you don’t trust! Eating is an act of vulnerability and so when we break bread together, we are essentially saying, ‘You’re a safe person and I’m willing to be open with you.’

3. Eating together creates space for sharing. When we eat together, we look at each other. (Rather than at a laptop.) Over food, as we chew, we are forced to listen. Ted and Rebecca usually relax on the couch as they talk about the day ahead. And as we eat, we naturally resort to more personal conversation, laughter and authenticity, things not as welcome when we are focused on the work. Almost instantly, Rebecca feels a space to share what’s happening with her vengeful x-husband – and of course Ted is there to listen.

4. Eating together is a gift. We are sustained and renewed by food. By serving his boss Rebecca, Ted on one level is contributing to her life and ensuring she lives on! This may be exaggerated, but who doesn’t appreciate the hand that feeds them, especially when given in thoughtfulness and without expectations!

5. Rituals create consistency and meaning. This is more than silly (and fattening!) biscuits, this is a recurring ritual that brings consistency and stability to Rebecca and Ted’s often unstable and unpredictable lives. Rituals point us to the sanctity of being alive -they commemorate our humanity and the passages of life we travel through. Rituals help us stop and remind us how precious life is and that we are only human. And when shared, rituals become some of our most cherished moments on this planet – when we stop and acknowledge the gift of life and the people around us.

Starting each day with biscuits is how Ted prioritizes the people in front of him and the bigger game of life – caring for one another gets us through business and life! (And Ted helped us get through a pandemic!)

“If you care about someone, and you got a little love in your heart, there ain’t nothing you can’t get through together.”

Ted Lasso

Biscuits aren’t the only place food brings this extended family together. From an extended Christmas table to Roy sharing ice cream with his niece Phoebe to Sam opening a Nigerian restaurant where the entire team celebrates – shared food is a central part of what makes this team (and show) so, very, delicious, meaningful and life-giving.

So a top leadership lesson!? Eat together with those you work with. Often. Believe in the power of the table – it will make us just a little bit more like Ted Lasso.

8 views0 comments

Recent Posts

See All


bottom of page