HDE Advent Calendar 2016

“one day - one person - one blog post”, from December 1st - 25th

HDE Advent Calendar Day 22: Baseball

 Hi, I'm Yoshiki Nagatome, Executive vice president in charge of sales and marketing management in HDE.

What skill have you improved in this year? 
As you may study a lot in business, for me the most improved skill is "baseball". Because I have played and taught baseball in my kid's team almost all holidays!
When my older son said "I'm interested in baseball and want to start! it.", I was very disturbed. I have played many kinds of sports, for example football, tennis, swimming, table tennis, ground golf and so on with him but he was't interested in them.  
Although quite a few Japanese men who have a son dream to play catch, I didn't with my son. To be honest, I seldom played baseball in my childhood. I like watching baseball but not be good at playing it.
Furthermore, I had a bad impression about kids baseball team. When I was a boy, many friends of mine played baseball. Baseball was the most poplar sports for kids in Japan 30 years ago. On the other hand, they seemed unhappy since baseball coaches were always angry and scolding them. 
That's why I opposed my son begin to play baseball at first. But my son had a strong will, he and I joined trial baseball lesson. 


I was surprised there are a few members in the ground. Kids baseball becomes no longer poplar. Atmosphere is also changing. Children seem happy to play baseball. I talked with some coaches and asked my concerns.
A coach said "When I was a boy I played baseball same as my son. As I felt sad to be scold by coaches so often, I want to change teaching style. I'd like to make kids be fan to play baseball. I also strictly tell them not to do something dangerous."  
Generally speaking, kids baseball team is better than before because it's necessary to make kids continue baseball. Reasons are as bellow,
- Birthrate is falling in Japan.
- Baseball is no longer popular.
- There are many kind of options for kids to play sports.
I felt relieved to hear that. It was my first kids baseball experience about 1 years ago.
Although there are enough technical coaches such as ex-professional baseball player, ex-scout in MLB, 20 years experienced baseball team manager and so on, they are welcome new member to join the team like me. 


At first, I wanted to know how to improve my son's baseball skill. As I know a lot about team member, I've come to like kids baseball more and more. I've enjoyed to play and teach baseball for a year.!
Of course baseball coach is hobby for me. It's also very useful about team management in our company. Interesting for me, baseball coach and sales manager have a lot in common, as below.
- Setting Goals (Win games, Get orders)
- Role clarification (Which position is suitable for each member)
- Interpersonal-relations (How to cooperate with each other)
I continue to think about team building both in weekdays and holidays!


Finally, I'd like to say it was very hard to write this theme in English. Because there are so many Japanese-English words about baseball. For example like these,
Quoted from Wikipedia.
Thank you for reading.
For managers, I recommend you to become a sports coach on weekends!