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POSITION Manager, Chicago Cubs
STATS 17 seasons as a manager in the minor leagues
I don’t get deterred when things don’t go right. I tend to work harder. I didn’t get concerned when 12 years of coaching in the minors became 13 and then 14. I just worked harder.
Perseverance is a huge word, and it’s a great quality in any walk of life. The [line on the] graph is never straight up. Most of us weren’t born with a silver spoon in our mouth. You’re not going to live life without adversity. But what you can do is look ahead. You’ve got to look ahead, believing that failure will eventually make you stronger.
Success is success. Don’t get caught up in titles. If you have success at any level, it’s still success. I make no differentiation.
I don’t have pat answers for anything. I don’t have things I say to the guys all the time. I don’t have a lot of lines. I try to deal with things on an individual basis.
The cliché is to say, “As long as they respect me, I don’t care if they like me.” But there’s a lot of truth to that.
You’ve got to know what you’re teaching, but you also have to have the communicative skills to get through to people. The communication is what’s most important—relating to your guys and getting them to buy into something. Part of that process is being flexible. I might have one thing I want to communicate but have to communicate it three different ways to three different people.
I like to think of myself as a blue-collar guy, and that means when it comes to baseball or anything else, there’s no magical way we’re going to get this done other than to work hard.
Photography: Nuccio Di Nuzzo/Chicago Tribune