Tuesday, 2 August 2011

The Ian Bell Test match Cricket run out /in - a lesson in DISCERNMENT in Sports for Selling?

Years ago the post second World War Industrial Scene in UK was much mocked.
Our press labelled the country as “the poor man of Europe”.

Strikes were called strikes in those days – meaning labour was withdrawn and work stopped.
We had not learned today’s language of spin with its ‘industrial action’ which actually means inaction.

British industrial culture was mocked abroad for its tea breaks –
“Everything stops for tea.”
Well tea breaks were back in the news again at an international Cricket Test match at Nottingham’s Trent - England versus India in the last few days.
( The site of the start of Cricket, the original Lord's ground in Marylebone,London)

Perhaps it is baffling to those who believe in winning at all costs that the India cricket team took a moral decision to withdraw their appeal for the run out of batsman Ian Bell who thought the ball had gone out of play and walked to the pavilion to ‘take his tea break’.

Was this appeal by the Indian Cricket team- the India of driving Tata and the world’s call centres?

To the English cricket team’s bafflement Bell – who should have played to the “whistle” and was guilty of being a bit dreamy – was given out after replays had shown that the ball had not gone for four. ( for those readers of the blog unfamiliar with cricket see explanation of the game below)

After tea ,the umpires were booed as they took the field but then the boos turned to cheers when Bell resumed his innings, Dhoni withdrawing the appeal over tea.

Sportsmanship had prevailed after all.

But ( as the Guardian newspaper asked) had the right decision been made?

Former captain Nasser Hussain said he would have appealed, just like Dhoni: "Putting myself in that position I would have done exactly the same." And another former captain, Michael Vaughan, added: "I would have done the same."

I am reading Pierre Sarda’s & Mike Burke’s book “The Silent Revolution” ISBN 0-927015-33-1 at the moment. Maybe modern Test cricket has something to teach selling concerning those powerful ‘feminine values’ as the co-authors define them.
(The silent Revolution -The emergence of feminine values in the work place - an international perspective. This book describes how a managerial style based on feminine values could be applied to create "win-win" opportunities both inside and outside organisations in their selling projects. Professional salespeople and Sales managers can apply a value standard that works best in modern business situations.)

Two of the 5 key principles come to mind:-
1.Concord with values such as forbearance, reconciliation, circumspection and

2. Psychological strength with its associated values such as listening, sensitivity compassion and empathy are significant changes to modern businesses.

Certainly the sporting leadership displayed by Captain Dohni would suggest this.
The Fruits of Selling success can and maybe should be about both the striving to win and the ‘how’ we win.

( A slide from Pierre Sarda's keynote address to the 2011 TACK TMI World Congress in Vilnius , Lithuania)

Like the game of cricket - morals and ethics in selling matter.

(Although I might fail the Norman Tebbit cricket test and be accused of treachery; I would love to see Tendulka get his special hundred whilst the Indian test team are gracing our country with their presence this summer.)

For those who read this blog and are mystified by the game of cricket as much as I am baffled by Baseball; here is the game of cricket in summary. It is almost as confusing as the classic Abbot and Costello “Baseball sketch – Who’s on first” from 1945 but still amusing.

Cricket (as explained to a foreign visitor.)

You have two sides, one out in the field and one in.

Each player that is in, goes out and when (s)he is out, (s)he comes in and the next player goes in until (s)he is out.

When they are all out the side that’s out comes in and the side that has been in goes out and tries to get those coming in out.

Sometimes you get players still in and not out.

When both sides have been in and out including the not outs – THAT IS THE END OF THE GAME.


Source: Adapted from a tea towel ( drying up cloth) I got at Lord's cricket ground years ago.

So readers of this blog please raise your tea cups or mugs of tea and be upstanding to toast Captain Dohni and share with me the civilising and conciliating benefits of tea and the tea break where problems can be solved and friends made. Cheers!

Other tea time diversion links
Interpersonal Psychometric Selling at tea time


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