Leadership Journey

Leadership Lessons from the Cleveland Indians

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On July 10, 2018, the Cleveland Indians had an unfortunate situation arise. The Manager, Terry Francona, walked out to the mound in the 9th inning to call in a relief pitcher for the closer, and the wrong pitcher walked out of the bullpen. You can read more about what happened here.

Yesterday, as I was listening to a podcast interview with Francona, he was asked about the situation. His response was incredible: It was my fault…I felt bad for Otero (the pitcher who came into the game). I feel bad that we put him in that spot.

Here is a Major League manager who admitted his mistake. There was a breakdown in communication (OP and OT do sound remarkably similar), and it cost the team the win.

Francona, however, still takes full responsibility.

So, what can we learn from this? Leadership means we will make decisions which impact those around us. Sometimes, those decisions are the right call at the right time, but others times the decisions we make lead to embarrassment for other people. It was Otero, after all, that stood on the mound and pitched, not Francona.

Is there a situation taking place in your life right now where you are dealing with the fallout of putting the wrong person in the wrong situation? If not, buckle down, because that day is coming.

I have heard interviews with business leaders who talk about how much money making the wrong hire will cost a company, and have seen similar setbacks over my years in ministry.

So, what do you do as a leader when you make a mistake? Check back on Thursday for part 2!

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