3 Strategies to Help Your Underdog Team Win

dream team mlb underdog winners work culture work positive world series Oct 29, 2023

I’m amazed year after year by the Major League baseball teams who do and don’t make it to the playoffs and the World Series.

With all of the fat contracts and top-heavy payrolls of so many major market teams, who would pick a mid-market, under-capitalized team who hasn’t been to the World Series in 29 years like the Kansas City Royals? Or the St. Louis Cardinals twice in the last decade?

How do they do it?

And what can you discover from their culture about how you and your team can succeed?

Here are three strategies to build your dream team around today as you create a championship-winner even though you may be an underdog:

Be Humble

Remember: It’s not about you. It’s about you and the team.

Play your role on the team. Try to be “a person” not “the person,” and know that it’s enough.

Before the post-season, other than rabid fans, who knew the names of the starting line-up players for these underdogs?

It’s amazing how much company culture grows more positive and people, productivity and profits soar when you pay little attention to the accumulation of personal accolades and more to growing a championship-winning team.

Be humble. Be about the team.

Ask yourself today, “Why am I doing what I’m doing? To be ‘a player’ on the team? Or, ‘the player’?”

Play for Mutual Benefit

Team is primary. There’s a Gestalt to a dream team that defies understanding by those who bend inward to their ego and insist on navel gazing—“I got mine. You get yours.”

The whole team really is greater than the sum of its parts. Sports writers talk about teams of destiny; teams that achieve greatness without the typically recognized player profiles.

An orientation to mutual benefit drives team achievement beyond individual accomplishment. Such teams often make it to the World Series by playing “small ball,” i.e., with singles and stolen bases that depend on each player doing his part instead of the “sultan of swat” dominating the game with home runs.

Think of it this way in your work team: So what if you’re leading the company in sales if it still shows a significant loss each quarter?

Ask yourself today, “How will my actions benefit the team? How will the company achieve its goals because of my unique contribution?”

Work the Golden Rule

Regard team members as highly as you do yourself.

It’s positively refreshing for an organization to clarify vision as “be a teammate” in this day of celebrity-status, multimillion-dollar contract, egomaniacal players who crash and burn. You can’t buy that core value.

Brian Tracy says, “Successful people are always looking for opportunities to help others.”

The Golden Rule works. Work the Golden Rule.

Ask yourself today, “What golden help do I share with my teammates?”

Want to build a championship team that consistently wins at creating a culture that connects people and profits?

Be a humble, mutual benefiting, Golden Rule-guided teammate as you Work Positive today.

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