Jon Eckertvia Unsplash

Leading Without Regret (Even after Losing Game 7)

Before the start of Game 7 of the World Series, Fox Sports told viewers that one team would end the night in celebration and the other would be left to endure an off-season filled with remorse. Or was it regret? I don’t recall and I didn’t record it, but either way it hit me as a little over the top.

Today, there’s no doubt that Chicago celebrates. Cubs fans young and old, the long-suffering and those who just jumped on the bandwagon, tasted World Series victory for the first time since 1908 – when none of them were alive. And it no doubt tastes sweet.

Cleveland fans? Not so much. They’ll have to wait at least another year to win their first title since 1948.

So will they spend the off-season in regret? Or remorse?

I don’t think so. The coaches, players, staff, and fans will look back and question a play here or a decision there. They will have their would-a/should-a moments. But ultimately, I think they’ll see the season for what it was: A great year that ended just short of their ultimate goal.

In my experience, great leaders help their teams mourn heart-breaking losses and move forward in positive, productive ways. They show gratitude for the success they had and the people who helped them achieve it. They accept the pain that comes with losing. They tip their cap to the winners. And they keep working to do their best.

If they don’t, they will find trouble. They will live in denial. They will live in bitterness. They will live in … well, regret or remorse. Neither are places you want to live as a leader or as a team.

We all experience highs and lows in life. We win some and we lose some. If we want to get the most out of life, we keep doing our best and find joy in whatever outcome that produces.

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