I’m a huge baseball fan. This has been true ever since I was a little boy. I remember season like 1993 when Darren Daulton (my favorite player of all time!) led the Fighting Phillies to the playoffs, only to ultimately lose the World Series to a walk off homerun by Joe Carter. But by then, my status as a fanatic was locked in. And I’ve followed the team closely ever since. I live out of market, so keeping up with the team presents challenges from time to time, but I find a way.
Baseball is well-known for the use of statistics to define just about everything. What’s his batting average? What percentages of the hits he gives up are on the curveball? How many runs does he allow during day games in July when the temperature is above 80 and the team is wearing retro jerseys? One emerging statistic is called WAR, or wins above replacement. The premise of this statistic is to assign a value to how many additional wins your team has earned with you in the lineup than they would have with the next best available player. Essentially, is your presence making your team better, and (if so), to what measurable extent?
Listening to the ongoing discussion about WAR got me wondering what the leadership implications would be. Am I more, less, or equally valuable to the leader that would replace me?
To try to contextualize this, I imagined a position where I left the organization. I considered what a new appointee would do in her first 6 months on the job? What would she identify as priority areas? How passive or aggressive would she be in addressing lingering issues? Who would she look to for ideas and advice? What I found was that the answers came to me fairly easily. I knew exactly what she would do. So that left one other lingering question…why wasn’t I doing it?
Imagine you knew you’d be walking away from your current leadership opportunity, for good, in 6 months. In an effort to clean up loose ends, what key projects and personnel issues would you focus on between now and then? Then, sidestep the noise and get to work!
What are you getting to work on? Share your thoughts in the comments below.