It seems difficult to comprehend, as snow continues to fall every few days in Denver as I’m writing this in early March, but Major League Baseball’s spring training is underway. Then again, the teams are taking those first baby steps for what they hope will be successful seasons, in the warmer climes of South Florida and arid Arizona.

What makes a sports team (or a producer) a winner?

The blueprint and the path for success vary. Last season’s World Series and Super Bowl matchups are perfect examples. The Red Sox and Patriots were supposed to be champions, crowned by prognosticators before the first pitch and snap. The Rockies and Giants were the latest examples of sports Cinderellas.

But they didn’t get there by accident. Champions (or near champions) never do. For those who thought the Giants and Rockies were lucky to get where they did, they should take heed in the words of former MLB executive Branch Rickey who opined that: “luck is the residue of design.”

In other words: good old-fashioned hard work; being prepared; doing the little things every day – those are the recipes to success.

For producers it might mean making that one extra call before calling it a day or signing up for that CE course that could be the difference in how many zeroes you write at the end of your year’s production stream. Or perhaps it’s dragging yourself to one more networking function, where you “bump into” that representative from a marketing organization that alters the direction of your career.

Let’s face it; the ball won’t bounce the right way for you every time (is that the luck part?), but more often than not, it will, if you’ve done the little things along the way.

Why? Because by being prepared, you are putting yourself, more oftentimes than not, in the right place at the right time.

In today’s world, however, success is no longer measured merely by the wins you have, but in how you achieve them. Look no further than how the stain of Spygate for the Patriots or steroids for Roger Clemens and Barry Bonds has changed our perception of their achievements. Another famous sports quote: “If you’re not cheating, you’re not trying,” now seems horribly dated and misplaced.

Winning and being successful is in your own hands. How you get there is your choice.

Daniel D. Williams, Editor

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