What Small Business Owners Can Learn from the San Francisco Giants

Author: Justin Reynolds | May 23, 2016

If recent history repeats itself, the San Francisco Giants will win the World Series this year. The reasoning is simple: The team won the Series in 2010, 2012, and 2014. If the pattern continues, Giants fans will be able to add 2016 to that list—and keep an optimistic eye on 2018.

The baseball season is just underway, and the NL West is shaping up to be quite a competitive division. Time will tell whether the Giants emerge victoriously. In the meantime, in honor of National Small Business Week, let’s take a look at three lessons small business owners can learn from San Francisco’s favorite baseball team.

1. Success is the result of a team effort

The best baseball player in the world can’t win a World Series on his own. Baseball games are won by the efforts of nine men on the field and 16 on the bench. Managers and coaches consider a variety of factors before choosing which players to use in which spots during which games.

Unless yours is literally a one-person company, you can’t drive your small business to success by yourself. There’s a reason you’ve hired folks in the first place: You can’t do everything on your own. Embrace teamwork, and you should see results.

2. Keep challenging yourself—just like the San Francisco Giants

Though the San Francisco Giants moved from New York to San Francisco in 1958, it wasn’t until 2010 that they won their first World Series after opening up shop on the west coast. They had made it to the Series three other times—1962, 1989, and 2002—but fell short and couldn’t take down the ultimate prize.

The 2010 World Series marked the franchise’s first title in 56 years. Still, the Giants weren’t satisfied with one trophy. They went on to win two of the next four World Series, cementing the team as a dynasty.

Let’s say your small business just landed its biggest contract ever. That victory definitely calls for celebration, but don’t rest on your laurels. Go out and try to land an even bigger contract.

3. Don’t be afraid to spend money

There’s a reason we all know the old saying that tells us we have to spend money in order to make it: It’s true.

In 2010, the Giants’ payroll topped $96 million. To be sure, that’s a lot of money. Still, 10 teams spent more that year. Attracting the best players doesn’t come cheaply, and it appears Giants ownership has learned this lesson. The Giants’ payroll has climbed steadily since the 2010 season. In 2012, they spent north of $141 million. In 2014, they spent $149 million. This year, the team’s payroll stands at $172 million.

You may be tempted to keep your costs down as much as possible. While you should certainly try to minimize unnecessary expenses, there are unavoidable costs associated with doing business. Sometimes spending more money is worth it in the long run. For example, you won’t be able to hire the best employees if you’re not willing to pay what they’re worth.

Go Giants!

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