Now that baseball season is fully underway and the boys of summer are heating up at Minute Maid Park, we can take a look at the team as an interesting lesson in management. Baseball managers have a difficult job. They need to encourage people of wildly different backgrounds to work together for a successful game where there can be only one winner. So what can the Houston Astros teach you about employee management? Here are some things to consider.
Evaluate fit and talent.
Pure, raw talent is critical for the success of a baseball player as well as an employee, but that isn’t remotely the only thing that you need to evaluate when considering someone for your team. Overall fit is also essential. If your new talent isn’t able to work effectively with your currently established team, all the talent in the world can’t make that relationship work.
Provide a common sense of purpose.
While players have different jobs on the field, from pitcher to shortstop and beyond, the ultimate goal is always to win. There may be individual accomplishments along the way, like pitching a perfect game, but the objective is always to beat the other team. Your workforce should also have goals that provide a common sense of purpose.
Know when to be hands off.
Baseball managers and coaches also have a complex series of decisions to make to guide their team to victory. Sometimes there is a need to be hands on, to help the team achieve success. But there are other times when it is best to avoid micromanagement to allow your team to succeed on their own. It is a delicate balance that will help everyone involved.
Celebrate your victories.
Finally, make sure you acknowledge your team when they win. In the workplace, of course, this isn’t as literal a win as the next game or even the World Series, but consider the principles behind the old-fashioned ticker tape parade. When you reward your team for their hard work, you encourage them to continue to work hard for you and for each other.