Monday, October 20, 2008
Joe Maddon 9=8 Math is Tampa Rays Winning Idea
The Tampa Bay Rays' inspiring run to the World Series is a good metaphor for effective branding.
How? Well, sometimes a simple saying or idea can translate into the right formula for success.
Just ask Rays' manager Joe Maddon. At the beginning of Spring Training, he told his players "9=8". His point was that nine players, playing smart and hard every nine innings, would make the Rays one of eight teams in the 2008 playoffs.
Maddon told the Lakeland Ledger:
I was very convinced about my message at the time. But I also knew the trepidations and scoffing that it would be met with. You've got to lean forward with those things.You could see some guys nodding.The guys who weren't nodding, you had no idea if they were thinking about where they were going to dinner that night. You just didn't know. With a group like this, and you try to get a little academic, sometimes it's met with more resistance. But I'm used to it
Since the Rays spent the past nine seasons as perpetual cellar dwellers of the American League and the joke of pro baseball, most baseball fans and analysts probably wrote-off Maddon's idea as unfounded optimism. However, the players bought into the concept, scrapped and fought to the top of the American League, and completed one of the most improbable and remarkable turnarounds in baseball history. Now, the saying is scripted across t-shirts in south Florida and there's even a Rays' blog named after it.
Maddon and his players are enjoying the last laugh as they head to the 2008 World Series. Maddon's "math" illustrates the importance of a single idea, and the potential power behind it.
As Alan Adamson mentioned in his book, BrandDigital, Many companies,such as Burger King, built their brand on a single idea. Like a business, most teams begin their season or their year with a new motto, but only a select few adhere to the principle behind the saying. The teams and companies that are fully committed to the effort behind the idea are the ones that elevate performance and ultimately succeed.
By Matt O'Hern at 11:04 AM | Comments (1)