Business Lessons from the Phillies’ Daycare

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Have you been watching the Phillies’ amazing season? They are headed to the World Series with a surprising lineup of very young players — many rookies. What could this possibly teach us about running a business?

Let’s start with why so many young players.

During the last few years, the Phillies have invested in a core group of expensive players like Bryce Harper, Kyle Schwarber, and Zack Wheeler leaving little to recruit and maintain a roster of prime-aged athletes. The only way to fill out the team was to choose either young, inexperienced players or veterans nearing the end of their careers. They tried the older route and suffered injuries and setbacks. The younger players, while many have gone back and forth to farm teams, have panned out — creating a nucleus of players who could potentially stay together for years and do really well.

Because they are still early in their careers, these “kids” make mistakes and it’s exciting to watch. The new recruits bring the energy that is driving the team to keep going. Mixing in with all that youthful energy is the voice of experience and professionalism. This combination of experienced veterans leading talented young players is undeniably explosive.

We are all facing a hiring crisis these days. With labor shortages and inflation, we can’t always afford to bring in more top talent. So — what can we learn from the Phillies?

Rob Thomson, the new manager, cared about the new recruits and was intentional about bringing them into the club culture. His leadership and communication style have grown a crop of winners. He has groomed these young players to be successful through open and honest conversations about how to act on and off the field. He has invested in them by teaching them how to meet Major League expectations, helped them to feel like they belonged, and how to succeed in the Big Show.

With your young employees, perhaps fresh out of school, take the time to create mentorship opportunities within the company. Spend time in the onboarding process to help your new members integrate into the work AND the company culture. Accept that there will be mistakes and allow them to be opportunities for growth and learning. By taking initiative to nurture — not coddle — the less experienced members of your team, you will be creating an unstoppable machine that is enthusiastic and loyal enough to carry your business to victory!

To learn how we can improve leadership and management strategies for your team, visit or contact

Let’s Go Phillies!

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