Hit for the Cycle: Why Strategy Planning is the All Star
Baseball players get paid bajillions of dollars to play the sport, which is often hard to wrap our heads around because, in the eyes of the fans, a player’s value fluctuates from game to game. When our favorite player hits one out of the park and the crowd goes wild, the player is the darling of the day and he is considered worthy of the lofty price of admission to pay his salary. However, when he strikes out or makes an error, the player becomes less worthy of his enormous price tag.
Luckily, that’s not how baseball really works. It goes deeper than that. It is a game of strategy and a quality player worthy of a multi-million dollar salary knows how to hit for the cycle. He knows that the singles, doubles, and triples are as valuable and necessary as the home runs. In baseball, a successful hit is not only gauged by the outcome, but it is also gauged by its relation to the ultimate, long term strategy of both the game and the entire season.
Might I add that hitting for the cycle is one of the rarest occurrences in baseball? You can check the stats in this article on MLB.com where you will find that “it’s a rare enough occurrence that no Marlins hitter has accomplished the feat, meaning that they have more World Series championships as a franchise than players who have hit for the cycle.” Wow. That’s rare.
There is a lot more than meets the eye when strategy is in place and a successful brand knows this well.
Developing brands focus so much time, energy, and expense on the home run deals, the clients with the deep pockets who will buy the biggest package. This is a worthy goal and will certainly buy you a few pretty things and pay a few bills. But it does not necessarily add value to your brand.
Your singles, doubles, and triples are where you gain the insight, experience, and confidence necessary to knock the big ones out of the park. They will also cover your expenses, fund your growth, and add tangible value to your brand while you prepare for the home runs.
Goals + Value = Strategy
When a brand spends time in strategy planning, they are able to identify and articulate their value alongside their goals. Value plus goals equal strategy. This is how a brand grows at a sustainable pace that adds value for the brand first and the customer second. Which is necessary because, without sustainable growth, there is no brand to service the customer.
Baseball stars aren’t always hitting for the rafters – or for the satisfaction of the fans. Sometimes, the goal is to load the bases, sometimes, it is to bring another player home. Sometimes, you hit a single even when you have a home run in you. Strategy is the name of the game and it depends as much on a player’s mindset as does his brawn.
Hitting for the cycle wins the game because it creates a pulse that becomes a beat that becomes the energy that fuels the grand slam that makes the crowd go wild. It is a controlled, strategic path to success and it allows a team to play towards their goals, not the crowd’s goals, all while satisfying and entertaining their fans.