Tuesday, October 11, 2011

Moneyball for Your Industry

Have you seen Moneyball?  I was impressed with the movie, and Brad Pitt will probably collect a few Hollywood award nominations this year (an Academy Award win for Best Actor? Probably not, but I could see a nomination).

The movie was an experience and it made me think.  This was not just a story about the business of Major League Baseball, but about all business. A classic tale of the underdog beating the odds and creating new ways to compete while reshaping their world (think Steve Jobs - We love us a good story of someone beating the odds and achieving great things!).

Billy Beane exited the "same old ways" and attempted something different in how to select players and forge a winning season.   As soon as he began the nay-sayers came out with the "this is not they way we have always done it" banter.  People laughed.  They shook their heads.  They predicted his failure.

He easily could have caved in and eased back into the old ways.  Instead Beane held the course and the 2002 Oakland A's made history.  While they did not win the World Series (Hey, this is not a spoiler, this is based on a true story!!!), his courage to a walk a different path changed the game.

I find "Billy Beanes" in the convention and meetings industry. These are the event professionals who are willing to try new programs, inject new activities, and create conferences and trade shows that deliver more than expected.  Like Beane, many of these mavericks achieve their greatness without bigger budgets or expensive celebrity speakers (while taking risks that and standing up to those who do not embrace the need for change).  Instead they rely on the intersection of experimentation and creativity while painting their future on a blank canvas.

There are also many who represent the "old guard" in the meetings business.  They fear that change could make them obsolete.  Instead of being champions of innovation, they hope that anything new is just a passing fad.  Their agendas look just like last year.

The world of business is changing and those who are hoping for passing fads are in trouble.

Look at your business and your industry.  Would you rather be part of the old guard or do you want to be Billy Beane?  Maybe it is time to Moneyball your company or industry!

Have A Great Day.

thom singer

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