Now working as a consultant, Kelly sold digital printing for 15 years so she understands the challenges, frustrations and pitfalls of building a successful sales practice. Her mission is to help printers of all sizes sell more stuff. Kelly's areas of focus include client recovery, retention and acquisition, and marketing communications projects.
Kelly graduated from the University of Michigan with a degree in Political Science and, among other notable accomplishments, co-founded the Windy City Rollers, a professional women's roller derby league.
As soon as I got wind of this movie, starring Brad Pitt and recounting the 2002 Oakland A’s pioneering use of sabermetrics, I knew I would get a blog out of it. But I never got to see the movie until last Saturday night.
Let me back up a minute for those of you not familiar with this concept.
According to Wikipedia, “Sabermetrics is the specialized analysis of baseball through objective evidence, especially baseball statistics that measure in-game activity. The term is derived from the acronym SABR, which stands for the Society for American Baseball Research. It was coined by Bill James, who is one of its pioneers and is often considered its most prominent advocate and public face.”
In “Moneyball,” Billy Bean, played by Pitt, travels to visit the Cleveland Indians to try to make some trades. While there, he meets an economics graduate from Yale who introduces Billy to the concept of using statistics to choose which players have the probability to deliver wins to the team.
You know what? Just see the movie, if you haven’t already, because as a girl I’m sure I’m messing up this description. At any rate, here are five lessons I think we can all take away from this story: 1) You need to be willing to listen to unorthodox ideas.
This means we need to get out of our comfort zone, learn new things and be open to new ideas. I talk about this all the time in my blog, so I won’t belabor the point. Open your mind!
2) You need to admit you can’t do it alone.
Billy wanted so badly to win a championship, and even with a payroll five-times smaller than the New York Yankees, he got pretty close. But, his ego didn’t get in his way; he knew that he needed to listen to other ideas and get help to make his dream a reality.
3) You have to commit to a strategy even if people say you are crazy.
Everyone on Billy’s staff hated the idea of doing something new. They were uncomfortable having the old norms challenged and wanted to stay with the tried-and-true ways of doing things. But Billy stuck to his guns, fought with a lot of folks, and stayed the course.
4) You need to stay committed to that strategy.
I am quite sure that there were times that Billy wanted to throw in the towel and go back to the way things were, but in his GUT he knew what he was doing was worth the risk.
5) You need to know what your values and goals are.
Spoiler Alert—Billy gets a HUGE offer to manage the Boston Red Sox and he turns it down. Whether that was because he wanted to stay close to his daughter, or because of his loyalty to his team, he knew what was important to him and his decisions were informed by those values. Or, maybe he just didn’t want to live in cold Bean town vs. sunny California.
I was inspired by the underdog message in this movie. Plus, I don’t like the Yankees. But see the movie, and let the message get through: Try something new and crazy, and see what happens!