Little League Lessons for Successful Program Delivery in the Big Leagues
While we shake off the dredges of winter, baseball teams around the country begin the time-honored tradition of Spring Training. Players knock dust off gloves, run through pre-season workout routines, and welcome new team members. Expectations and optimism abound as the country eagerly awaits a new season of the Great American pastime.
Many good leaders built the foundation of their skillsets unintentionally from a young age participating in team sports. As baseball teams around the country begin another year of Spring training, Optia will take you through some of our favorite, practical Little League lessons that have helped our team members WIN BIG in the leagues of program delivery.
- Get Dirty
- Little League (LL): Dive back into first on a pick-off play.
- Program Delivery League (PDL): Roll up your sleeves and work side by side when needed, to fully understanding everyone’s perspectives. Teams WIN BIG when everyone is engaged and committed to finishing the messy work.
- LL: There’s no walking in baseball.
- PDL: Work hard and smart. Help your teams do the same. Make the extra effort – read the materials ahead of time. Attend the seminars and networking events. Teams WIN BIG when team members work hard together.
- Leave it all on the field
- LL: Dive for the ball; give every play your best effort; if the play doesn’t go your way, shake it off and move on.
- PDL: Fail fast and focus forward. Teams WIN BIG when team members embrace in a continuous cycle of analysis, ideation, testing, and improvement. See more here.
- Respect the officials
- LL: Learn respect and pick your battles. Coaches can question umpires’ calls without undermining their authority.
- PDL: Respond with respect, sincerity, and humility. Sometimes you need to disagree. But teams WIN BIG when team members can disagree without being disagreeable.
- One pitch at a time
- LL: One homerun does not win *most* games.
- PDL: Make progress one step at a time. Teams WIN BIG when team members are focused on meeting long-term goals with short-term milestones.
- Attack the game
- LL: Put me in, Coach. I’m ready to play.
- PDL: Pace yourself and be ready to switch gears. Teams WIN BIG when team members can stretch their skills and take on new responsibilities.
- Be ready
- LL: Know what you are going to do before the pitch is thrown.
- PDL: Position yourself for what is coming next. Luck favors the prepared. Teams WIN BIG when team members all understand the plan.
We see so many parallels between our time spent on softball and baseball fields and our time in virtual meetings and boardrooms. The little league principles of “sportsmanship, fair play and teamwork” apply on the field and in life. Let’s look forward together to what this next season holds. Play Ball!!
For more great advice on little league leadership lessons, read this article on LinkedIn.