There is more to being a Champion than having a good draft or making killer trades. They obviously help but if you really want to win you need to adapt the attitude of an effective owner.
- Be Proactive - An effective owner is always looking for ways to improve his team. Building an effective team starts at the draft but it is not all about trading after that. Without making snap judgments you need to identify your shortcomings and work to fix them. This is not all about trading. The waiver wire and FAAB are very useful tools that are in place to allow you to fill holes and make small improvements. Even small upgrades can make a large impact over the course of the season.
- Begin with the End in Mind - Before the draft or auction, before making a trade, or even making a waiver claim the effective owner knows exactly what he hopes to achieve with any given move. He has considered the consequences and the benefits of his plan. Every move you make should be to further your ultimate goal of winning. If it does not move you towards a championship you should reconsider.
- Put First Things First - Do not waste the time you spend managing your team on fruitless pursuits. David Wright may be your favorite player but trading Evan Longoria for him would be a mistake. Realize that your first priority is to win and not to build a collection of your favorite players. All of your focus should be on moving your team towards a championship.
- Think Win/Win - Any deals you make should be made without sacrificing the good relationship between you and the other party. Don't use trickery or any other form of deception to complete a deal. Because if you do you may ruin any chance of making further deals with that team. Your trading partner should leave the table satisfied that he accomplished something even if they did not accomplish as much as you did.
- Seek First to Understand, Then to be Understood - Before you can make an effective deal you need to understand the needs of your potential trading partner. By providing your rival with what he needs, you increase the opportunity to gain what you in turn require from the deal. Put yourself in their shoes and ask yourself if you would make the same deal as the owner of the other team. When you are satisfied from both their perspective and yours, you will have created a good offer.
- Synergize - Work to create good relationships with the other team owners. The more open the lines of communication in your league the stronger the league will be as a whole. A strong league has fewer conflicts and misunderstandings. Work with the other owners to write a constitution and set of rules that satisfies all of the owners. Why have rules that a majority of the league does not like? A group of happy (or at least content) owners makes a stronger league.
- Sharpen the Saw - Effective owners never stop learning. They constantly investigate new strategies and advanced statistics. They study the players at all levels of competition. They watch baseball and think about the game. Effective owners never think they have an unbeatable strategy because they know that eventually it will be countered. When an owner no longer studies the game he ceases to be effective.
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