Major League Baseball (MLB) spring training kicked off with the first swing of the bat by the Cleveland Indians.
Thousands of fans will be flocking to Goodyear Ballpark to cheer on their favorite players and enjoy an all-American favorite past-time while chowing down a few hot dogs, nachos, and beer. Probably the last thing on their minds is how all this fun and excitement has to do with managers in the workplace, right?
Turns out, managers can learn a thing or two from the way the team general managers and coaches handle their players during spring training. Many of the techniques that sports coaches use can apply to the way managers can conduct themselves in any workplace – to create home runs at the office.
A great manager knows how to bring out the best in every team member.
Just like the great baseball managers of today, it’s critical to not only identify top players, but also to spot the best traits in all players in order to make for a winning team. Good management means taking the time to observe, guide, correct, and coach all team members so that the game is played well. This is true in the office too, where the drive to be the best is everywhere. The best managers do not seek fame or glory for themselves – they bring it out in their people.
Managers know how to motivate and inspire others every day, even the tough ones.
When it comes to translating the management skills of a baseball GM to that of a business manager, the goal is essentially the same. Motivating and inspiring comes from being a leader that others can put their trust in and follow to the end. Even if this means making sacrifices to get there. The business game can be just as exhausting as the sports game, and therefore managers must walk the walk, not just talk the talk. Leading by example is the way to go.
Excellent managers understand when it’s time to make changes and adjust.
Pulling a player off the field is a tough decision, but it has to be made and it has to be done for the better of the team. This is also true when it comes to managing in the office. People become burnt out, ineffective, and they can develop bad habits that reduce their ability to perform. So too, the business needs can change, which requires a change of personnel.
Being a leader on and off the playing field is one and the same. Take inspiration from the top MLB coaches and GMs to develop your own leadership abilities.
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