Kickball Draft Strategies and Nurturing Relationships


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Last summer I managed to survive my wife’s family reunion. It involves a week of camping and a very competitive kickball game on the opening night. Our eight year old nieces were tapped as captains and each selected their own team. I love kickball and since I lettered in both football and indoor track at the collegiate level I felt certain I would go high in the draft. “Come on girls, pick your ole Uncle Alan and your team will be sure to win!”

I was the last pick and now understand the sinking feeling that floods over you in that situation … ouch! It was interesting to observe the selection process though. The picks started with older brothers and sisters, and cousins who live close by. There is no doubt that my nieces are very competitive and both teams wanted the bragging rights that a win would bring. At first I suspected age as the reason for my poor draft performance. After all, it does take a leap of faith to believe that athletic prowess of 25+ years ago is still relevant to the kickball game at hand. But what was their selection process? I don’t know if I’ll ever completely figure it out but I do believe that distance was a factor. Let me explain. I live in a more distant city which means that the team captains only get to see me a couple of times a year. While they know me they just don’t have as many shared experiences with me as they do their brothers, sisters and closer relatives. In John Maxwell’s short book “Relationships 101” he lists five factors that you should check to see if you are building solid relationships with others:

1. Respect – The desire to place value on other people.

2. Shared Experiences – You can’t be relational with someone you don’t know. It requires shared experiences over time.

3. Trust – Without trust, you cannot sustain any kind of relationship.

4. Reciprocity – For people to improve relationally there has to be give-and-take so that everyone benefits as well as gives.

5. Mutual Enjoyment – When relationships grow and start to get solid, the people involved begin to enjoy each other. Just being together can turn unpleasant tasks into positive experiences.

These factors are both simple and timeless as it relates to nurturing relationships. As for kickball, I’ll need to do better than 0 for 3 to improve in next year’s draft.

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Alan See
Alan See is Principal and Chief Marketing Officer of CMO Temps, LLC. He is the American Marketing Association Marketer of the Year for Content Marketing and recognized as one of the "Top 50 Most Influential CMO's on Social Media" by Forbes. Alan is an active blogger and frequent presenter on topics that help organizations develop marketing strategies and sales initiatives to power profitable growth. Alan holds BBA and MBA degrees from Abilene Christian University.


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