As was reported widely, the challenge that Vlad Guerrero Jr clearly disagreed with may have been the straw that broke the camel’s back for Charlie. But we saw this coming since the Toronto Blue Jays played the Angels…because we were there.
With television broadcasts being what they are, it’s very possible to have a lot of insight into what happens in a professional sport event. However, it is so much more clear to see exactly how athlete’s (or any human) respond to leadership when observing their body language in person.
By having paid data collectors attend the following games (see below), we were able to collect information that showed us that the Toronto Blue Jay’s players didn’t believe in their path. This is not a referendum on one man, but more human experience, organizational culture, and the fact that it is much more predictable than most people realize.
What We Did At Blue Jay’s Games
In the 2022 season we paid cash to 4 people to attend 4 MLB series involving the Toronto Blue Jays. Why the Blue Jays? Largely because the founder is a superfan.
We were at:
- May 26th-29th in Anaheim
- June 17th-19th in Toronto
- July 4th-10th in Oakland and Seattle
In these games, our human experience data showed us two primary indicators.
In all these games we had seats that offered views into the Blue Jays’ dugout in order to capture some, though (admittedly) not all, behaviours. We found the following to be true based on the body language and behaviour of the athletes.
Blue Jays Were Having Fun But Not Focused
Based on our work, it was clear that Blue Jays athletes were having fun everybody but not focused.
For us, focus means exhibiting behaviours of a narrow but purposeful intent.
This was not present.
In fact, we saw regular instances where fun and focus were completely diverging.
Blue Jays Lacked Clear Performance Indicators
It was clear, at least through the media, that Charlie and the Blue Jays were instituting great cultural norms such as their “red light, orange light, yellow light, green light” system for effort.
However, there was a large amount of athlete behaviour that didn’t support an understanding of clear performance indicators.
At the end of the day, we had the information and we didn’t get it to you fast enough.
If we had, maybe things would be different, and for that we are sorry.