Today is the home opener for my baseball team, the SF Giants. As I listen to the morning local sports radio, on site at the ball park, I am reminded of the renewal baseball fans have each year when their team begins a new season. Every fan is an optimist and believes this will be the year. Yea, even Cub fans. We put aside the past season and see the possibilities of the future. Spring is here along with baseball – it is a time of renewal.
This spirit of renewal with a new baseball season serves as a metaphor for leadership. As a leader we will have times when we are afforded an opportunity for renewal. It may come with new work responsibilities and team members. It may come with a new reporting line and new boss. It may come with just the fact that it is a Monday and you choose to renew your leadership approach with your existing team.
The SF Giants have a great slogan for the past couple of year. It links the players and the fans together as one, “Together We are Giant”. We should feel free to use this as we lead our teams as it paints a great picture of the sum of the parts lead to something great and powerful. That is what we are working to accomplish each day as leaders – we move together to accomplish our goals.
With a spirit of renewal we focus our energy forward. As a leader you have an opportunity to refocus on the existing goals or to develop new goals. For you as the leader it is critical to assure the team understands the goals. With each step forward, you and your team moves away from the issues of the past. Some of the team may resist and want to hold onto the past – ah, an opportunity. Bring this thinking to the surface and talk about it; yet be careful. Often as leaders we can spend too much time with those who want to stand looking back and not want to follow the team moving forward. As a leader assure you spend your time honoring and supporting those who choose to move forward with you. Focus on the natural “pull” from the staff moving forward.
Back to opening day … Play Ball! A metaphor for renewal and a lesson for leaders.