Last year, we had the opportunity to interview 2016 World Series Champions Chicago Cubs former catcher, turned newly crowned Chicago Cubs manager, David Ross. If you’ve had the opportunity to read his book, “Teammate: My Journey in Baseball and a World Series for the Ages,” you know he focuses on how learning to be a good teammate contributed not only to his success, but the success of his team. We believe that message applies to your work, school, and most importantly, your relationship with your financial representative.
Here’s what Ross had to say.
What’s the most important characteristic you need to be a good teammate? Accountability. I think accountability is lacking in so many areas of life. When you’re on a team, being accountable to your teammates, whether you’re on or off the field, is an important one for me.
Which characteristic is the hardest to learn? Unselfishness. Selfishness is at the heart of all of us naturally. When you can get outside of yourself and your first thought is how to lift up others, you’re on your way.
What steps did you take to cultivate these traits in yourself? I learned a lot of hard lessons. I made a lot of mistakes. One of the things I talk about in my book is learning from the hard times and not making the same mistakes. I think failure really is birthplace of success – it’s where we’re going to learn.
What's the most important thing you would tell a young athlete or someone starting a new career, about success? Be selfless. Be accountable for the good and bad, especially the mistakes you make. Learn from those mistakes. And remember that you can’t be serious all the time. Work hard and have fun. I had a lot of great teammates that taught me how to enjoy life and that really helped me, especially at the back end of my career.
You kept a journal throughout your season. What did that teach you? For me, I saw how much others were doing for me. I don’t feel like my success came from anything I really did, it came from what others did for me. The way my teammates lifted me up, what they said to the media, the more I thought about how people made me feel opened my eyes to what a great group of guys I was able to play with.
There you have it. Words of wisdom from a beloved Cubs player, turned manager. His qualities for success aren’t only relevant to baseball. Unselfishness, accountability, and lifting others up are characteristics you need to succeed in life. Without knowing it, David hit at the core of what COUNTRY Financial strives to do every day, in our communities and in our business.
What other attributes do you need to be successful in anything you do? We’d love to hear from you in the comments.