Not sure if the opening day of the baseball season is as much of a frenzy in where you live as it is with our Atlanta Braves, but it made me think about what businesses can learn from baseball. Here are just three ideas:

1. Fundamentals – I’ve never played competitive baseball, but it seems to me that the best teams, in any sport for that matter, really focus on improving their fundamentals. The teams which hit, catch, and throw more consistently than others, typically win. In business, it’s about People, Innovation, and Marketing. Organizations that can attract and retain the sharpest people, consistently innovate, and market themselves – to both existing relationships and new ones – typically win!
2. Relationships – Have you seen the teams with 1-2 superstars constantly competing for air time struggle? No question that individual performance trumps all, but it’s a team sport requiring – call me crazy – communication, support, core and context where your teammates pick up and deliver on areas in which may not be your strong suits, coaching and mentoring, and candor to put in the best possible team asset for the best possible outcome. Oddly enough, business leaders and organizations that I work with, understand and apply the same principles – daily!
3. Personal & Professional Growth – In baseball, pitchers and catchers start a month earlier than others. There are swing coaches to help improve a player’s swing speed. Speed and agility trainers to constantly raise the bar on an athlete’s explosiveness out of the gate and maintenance to avoid injury. In business, we’re all products of the advice we take, so how are you, how are your people, teams, and the organization overall growing – personally and professionally?

Whether the national championship, a major golf tournament, or the opening day of the baseball season, there are very definite lessons businesses and business leaders can learn from sports. Are you savvy enough to open your eyes and ears and challenge the status quo – daily?

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