The 2017 Major League Baseball draft is a little over a month away. On June 12th, all the hard work by scouting directors, crosscheckers, area scouts and front office scouting personnel will be on center stage. The hard work will be done. Game evaluations, showcases, pre-draft workouts, medical reviews, player interviews and draft meetings will be complete. Prospects and their family members will wait in anticipation to hear their name called.
The Minnesota Twins select #1 overall. They have competent scouts and front office baseball personnel. They know the type of player they are looking for that fits their organizational philosophy. On June 12th, they will make their best informed decision based on the information they have gathered over the past 12-months and beyond and make their pick. The same is true for the other 29 baseball organizations as well.
The question becomes, how clear are you on what you’re looking for? Selecting baseball players is difficult at best. We often get it wrong. However, knowing exactly what you’re looking for helps. Not what baseball magazines, websites or draft “guru’s” say; but what you are looking for as a scout and organization.
Regardless, the following three characteristics are vital when bringing a new player or new hire on to your team or in your organization.
Character: This is first on the list for a reason. It’s the most important – not that other factors aren’t, but forming, reforming and transforming character is extremely hard. Character is simply who you are. Do Major League Baseball scouts look at character? You bet they do…and if they don’t, they better start. Any leader in the market place should as well. Are you clear on the character traits you’re looking for? How will you discern those traits? This is a big deal. If you miss on this one, you will have major problems later.
Competence: Character is critical, however it’s NOT a substitute for the ability to get the job done. Have you clearly identified the skill set of your new hire? How can you be sure they possess what you’re looking for? My friend who works for a large company in their HR dept taught me that the best indicator of future performance is past performance. In baseball, scouts look carefully at past performance history – it gives them measurable’s as they confidently work through the process of selecting the right player. Analytic’s and old fashion baseball scouting are married together to make the best informed decision on drafting the right player. In the market place, If the candidate hasn’t previously demonstrated what you need them to do for your company, it’s not a deal killer, but you would be wise to proceed with caution. Hiring your friend is fine, just make sure they are very competent to accomplish the role.
Chemistry: This may be the easiest for many leaders to discern. Do you feel this person will fit into the culture of your team or organization? Will the people in your organization connect with this new person? On many Major League Baseball scouting reports there is a category called “makeup.” In my opinion, it is one of the most important categories on a report. Professional and college teams are full of examples of players who get traded, suspended, released or dismissed because they don’t “fit in the program.” This screams chemistry! Always remember, talent wins games – but chemistry wins championships. Chemistry matters!
Recently, I read a quote from author Peter Drucker, he said; “The most important decision a leader makes is who does what.” So who will be your next “draft” pick? For you, I don’t know that answer, however on June 12-14, 2017 all 30 Major League Baseball teams will find out.
I trust that Character, Competence and Chemistry will help you make the best informed decision for your team and organization. Happy hunting!
What do you look for when selecting people for your team and organization?