Sunday, November 1, 2009

Not in the Box Score

It is the baserunner who makes a hard slide into second to break up the double play, the infielder who dives and turns a sure double into a single, the batter who fouls off 10 pitches before he gets a hit. It is the volleyball player who saves ball after ball from hitting the floor after a wild pass. It is the quarterback who runs down a faster defensive back after an interception to save a sure go ahead touchdown. It is the leader who, when all appears lost, motivates his team to dig deeper, to try harder, to never ever quit.

None of the above will show up in the newspaper box score the next day, but these plays and leadership may have won the game. Box scores only report the highlights, the "so called" important statistics. Box scores don't document heart. Nor can heart be measured in traditional ways. It can be judged however...if we pay attention.

The funny thing about the players who show heart and don't get the press or credit, is that they don't care about the press or credit at all. They care about the score at the end of the game. Did their team win? Did their TEAM win? Not did I win, or did I play well..but did our team win. Stats take care of themselves when you give 100% and do the things that are important but don't show up in the box score.

In the business world egos can take over. Sometimes owners and managers only want to implement ideas that are theirs...even if it is not the best plan. As consultants, we often spend time trying to figure out how to make a good idea from a "lowly" employee seem like the owner/manager's idea. You see, if it is not their idea it may not get the attention it deserves and possibly will not be implemented. Advising would be lots easier if not for those box scores.

Who gets the credit shows up in box scores.

I admit it... sometimes I look at the box scores to see if one of my kids got the credit she deserves in an athletic event. I read books about business owners/managers who have been innovative in thier organizations. But I know in my heart of hearts that wins are made by plays and leadership that never show up in box scores. Wins are made by employees doing what they do to the best of their abilities.

Box scores aren't bad. They just never tell the whole story. We must look past box scores to the important details...always.

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