Joe Madden on Culture

 John Ruh  Business Culture

Joe Madden on Culture

By: John Ruh

Joe Madden (the 54th manager of the Chicago Cubs), wrote over 30 years ago about the power of the right culture. His leadership is about compassion, creativity and a positive, “we can, we will” attitude. He has a vision (embrace the target is the phrase he uses) and a context that says we can and will get there. He is not afraid of going outside the nine dots. He strongly encourages people to experiment and not be afraid of making mistakes. He also claims to be an expert at the art of doing nothing. “I really enjoy that,” he said. “I didn’t have enough chance to do nothing last offseason. I want more of an opportunity to do nothing, and I mean that in a positive way. When you get this downtime, to be able to do nothing well, that’s my goal.” (–spt-0331-20160330-column.html)


Some Quotes from Joe Maddon

  • “The players don’t have to be the first ones there or the last ones to leave. That has nothing to do with winning. Zero.”
  • “Don’t ever permit the pressure to exceed the pleasure.”
  • “Attitude is a decision.”
  • “Rules can’t take the place of character.”
  • “I don’t want my players afraid of making mistakes.”
  • “Everybody is so different. So the issue is where they all get to know one another.”
  • “If I’m honest with you, you might not like me for a day or two. But if I lid to you, you’re going to hate me forever.”
  • “When we have our organizational meetings, we don’t just talk about numbers, we talk about agenda. About each player we ask – what is his agenda – is it himself or the team?”
  • “You have to have a little bit of crazy to be successful,” Maddon said. “I want crazy in the clubhouse every day. You need to be crazy to be great. I love crazy. I tell my players that all the time.”


Suggested Next Step

Create a powerful vision and context for yourself, your department, your company.

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