Royal Lessons—Part 1
Clarke Sanders - April 25, 2016 11:00 am
What a great time to be a Royals fan.
I first became a Royals fan in 1978 when I took a job as the night announcer at KGNO in Dodge City. KGNO is a Royals affiliate. I ran the game—which is to say I was the guy who plugged in the local commercials and station identifications when Denny and Fred called for them.
It was easy to be a Royals fan back then because they were good, had a lot of star players, were winning division titles and American League pennants all culminating with a World Series Championship in 1985.
Then the late ‘80s arrived and being a Royals fan was not so easy any more. Making the play-offs, which had been nearly a yearly occurrence for a decade, stopped happening. Things got worse in the ‘90s and stayed that way through the first dozen years of the new century. It is not fun going into a season with the thought, “I hope we don’t lose a 100 this year.”
However, under the brilliant leadership of General Manager Dayton Moore and Field Manager Ned Yost, happy days are here again.
So, what lessons can the rest of us learn from the Royals success? Consider:
#1: Get a good plan. The reason Dayton Moore was hired was because he convinced ownership he not only had a plan, but it was a good plan.
#2: Get people who buy into the plan. Enter, among others, Ned Yost.
#3: Be prepared to stick with the plan when times are tough. When Dayton Moore went to work he said the goal is not only to get good, but to stay good for several years. In order to achieve long term success, Moore said it would take 7 to 10 years. I remember him telling a group of us radio types several years back, “Nobody wants to hear that in year 4”, but he knew the plan was right, he knew it would take time and he refused to do things in the short term that would negatively affect the long range goals.
There is a very short list of good lessons from the Royals Front Office. In a few days I’ll offer some thoughts on the lessons the Royal players on the field are teaching us.