Monday, February 18, 2013

Happy President's Day (and a return to Baseball)

I wanted to wish everyone a very Happy President's Day to all of our readers from everyone here at Astron. If you're not a lucky one who has off today (I am one of the unlucky), then take solace is this: President's Day means that the start of baseball is right around the corner. Before the next major holidays, we'll have Spring Training Games, the World Baseball Classic, and, yes, Opening Day.

Baseball season reminds me of this Forbes article I read back in the fall. It talked about Joe Girardi's leadership while battling both personal and professional adversity. As the article wrote about Girardi in mid-October:

Girardi’s recent achievements are probably some of his finest as a manager. Besides winning his third American League East title and narrowly defeating a tenacious Baltimore Orioles ball club during the regular season and in the American League Division Series, he accomplished these amazing feats with a heavy heart. Girardi’s father had passed away of Alzheimer’s disease on October 6th and kept the matter private until an obituary was going to run in a local paper back in his home state of Illinois. As Girardi was being peppered with questions regarding Alex Rodriguez’s performance and the Yankees’ chances of success in the postseason, he compartmentalized his numerous tasks and didn’t let a personal tragedy affect his job. Girardi put the needs of the ball club in front of his own anguish and grieving.
This is not meaning that this solution is right for everyone but as a leader of a ballclub, an organization or even a small group, the key is to always find a way to provide an example for other employees--especially in the face of adversity. There is a lot to be said for people who lead through good times, but the best leaders are the ones who are able to navigate the tough times and still come out on top. And although the Yankees didn't win the World Series last year, Girardi's leadership in the face of the tough time the team faced, while not always perfect, was a big reason they got as close as they did.

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