In the Peripherals: Understanding the Team Dynamic

By Chris Hislop // Published on Oct 23, 2013

Let's think about marketing as a sport for a minute. The goal of any team is to come out on top. At the end of the day, there is always a winner, and there is always a loser. Neither come easy. The competition is thick, and sometimes the difference between winning and losing is nearly indecipherable.

What you have control over is the team you surround yourself with. What you’re looking for in a team are players that use their peripherals. Players that can survey the field and see what potential hazards and disadvantages are approaching before they get laid out on the playing surface. If all you’re honing in on is the goal, you’re going to get taken out, and when you’re taken out, it’s impossible to win.

You’ve got to survey the field. You’ve got to be conscious of everything around you. This is a crucial element to both athletics and your organization’s marketing initiatives. Tunnel vision is guaranteed failure.

Forcing shots will get you nowhere.

Swinging blindly will yield nothing but strikeouts.

Putting yourself under center without an offensive line is basically subjecting yourself to a guaranteed visit to the ER.

Look to your teammates for better offensive opportunities and solutions. Look to your teammates to help establish a stout defense. If you think you’re going to stop eleven guys from scoring a touchdown by yourself, you’re delusional.

Communication is key. If nobody is telling you about an incoming pick on the parquet, you’re entering a world of pain.

As a team you need to celebrate your victories and, on the flip side, learn from defeat. Both are inevitable. Nobody wins every game. And that’s okay. The world would be a very boring place if tides didn’t turn. Take both winning and losing in stride. If you’re pointing fingers and assigning blame, your team is going to unravel. Nobody likes to play for a team or individual that’s always looking for the scapegoat.

Embrace the role of underdog. The underdog generally has more to fight for a win, and has far more of a bite. Everyone pulls for the underdog. If you’re the favorite, don’t lose your edge. Maintain your goals. If you lose sight of the grit and determination that got you to your place at the top of the heap, you’re going to fall.

Don’t sign all the superstars. It doesn’t guarantee championships, and in many instances, it deflates morale. Too much ego in the clubhouse leads to inevitable implosion. Look at the 2012 Boston Red Sox vs. the 2013 Boston Red Sox. Huge difference.

tunnel_people.jpgYour peripherals are one of your greatest assets. They are the difference between winning and losing. Keeping your vision sweeping across an ever-changing terrain of potential risk and reward is what separates a win from a loss. With your marketing, assemble a team that knows the fight you’re fighting. Assemble a team of go-getters. A team that has their eyes and ears open. Individuals that are constantly looking at ways to expand your brand and keep you moving in a direction that helps the organization score goals, while deflecting competitors chasing the same end result(s).

Draw up the plays that lead to success, and make sure everyone has the plays inherently drawn up on their sleeve. If you’re on the same page and are working the same routes, the scores will begin to pile up. And when the scores add up, wins will fall in line.

 

"Trouble makes us one with every human being in the world."
- Oliver Wendell Holm