Bench Strength.

I was at the Seahawks game yesterday as they played the Baltimore Ravens at Century Link Field. The hero of the game was certainly the team’s kicker, Steven Hauschka. Hauschka kicked 5 field goals that were the difference in the Seahawks victory. Hauschka is new this year; replacing Pro Bowler Olindo Mare. Hauschka has been nearly perfect by missing only 2 field goals all year (one of them from a nearly impossible 61 yards).

Mare was a tough act to follow, but in football (and all sports), when someone leaves, the next guy or gal has to step in and get the job done. In both sports and business, it’s called “bench strength.” In business, people come and go for a variety of reasons. People leave for vacation and call in sick. No matter what the reason, a business needs someone to step in and not miss a beat. How deep is your bench? Is your organization able to be resilient? How good is your human redundancy?

One last thought. Peyton Manning is a future Hall of Famer and led his Indianapolis Colts team to multiple 10-win seasons and 2 Super Bowls. He has been hurt all year and his team has yet to win a game this year. Steve Jobs has been viewed as the most irreplaceable CEO in the world, yet Tim Cook has picked up the reigns flawlessly.

Which example does your organization most resemble?

This week’s quote – “If I had 8 hours to cut down a tree; I would spend 6 hours sharpening my ax.
– Abraham Lincoln

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