Getting on the front foot

With the summer of Cricket already upon us it is worth reflecting on the business lessons that can be drawn from a casual observation of the basic strategies of the game.

  • In the classic five-day version of the game a batsman has the time to build a score, pick loose balls and sloppy deliveries, develop confidence and read the style of each of the bowlers.
  • In the short versions of the game patient consideration is replaced by the need for a quick score.
  • One-day and 20/20 are exciting to watch, but the risks taken are far higher than at test level.
  • A national cricket team needs to have a variety of skills, resources and strategies for success in the short and long game.
  • Building that team is a tricky balance for national selectors and team captains.
  • The objective of any team member is to help the team succeed in whatever version of the game is being played.
  • Taking a risk may be seen as holding some personal downside yet not taking any will ultimately result in failure.
  • Leaders need to encourage the right mix of conservatism and risk taking. 
  • Risk comes with attendant occasional failure and from failure, often, comes learning.
  • Creating the right environment for appropriate risk taking and resultant learning, is as much part of the leader’s role as the setting of the overall strategy.

I leave you to draw the parallels with the business world.


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