Redskins Hog Heaven regularly bashes Washington Redskins owner Daniel Snyder, deservedly so, for his lack of strategic football thinking and organizational leadership. Fertilizer rolls downhill. Washington’s lack of on-field success ties directly to failings at the top. That’s in contrast to the approach of Robert Kraft, the Rooney family and Steve Bisciotti who wisely keeps his hands off the strong Baltimore Ravens front office that he inherited.
Our disdain for Snyder is not total. The man is a brilliant marketeer and forward thinker when it comes to selling us stuff. And, before you go saying that’s another putdown, I spent considerable time in a mostly successful career as a salesman for the lets build a smarter planet company. Anyone like me will tell you that nothing in business happens until the sale is made. “Good salesman” is no oxymoron to me.
A story in sportsbusinessdaily.com reminds us of how bleeding edge the Redskins are. Here’s the snippet from the post Checking out check-in platforms:
“The Washington Redskins, among the most active individual teams in the location-based services space, have signed deals with both Foursquare and GetGlue aimed at boosting team-related business both inside and outside of FedEx Field. Promotions include exclusive drawings for seat upgrades and access to tailgate parties, merchandise coupons, and food and beverage discounts.”
Location-based social media, or “check-in” software, on your smart phone is how other people know where you are and where you’ve been. There are privacy concerns. Those Law and Order segments that show the good guys tracking the suspect’s movements via their cell phone are not so far from reality with 40 percent of all U.S. cell phones as smart phones. Now, your mistress can tell whether you’ve gone home to your wife or to your hot new girl friend…or boy friend. I don’t judge.
More likely, though, is that you want your smart phone to know where you are so that Foresquare, Groupon, ESPN, and the Redskins can send you deals and game previews and player tweets that you want to see. If your handheld senses where you are, it can direct you to the nearest gas station or men’s room, or tell you which concession stand has no waiting. We guys find it easier to ask our device for directions than to ask people, as our women can tell us (I’m not lost, honey. I’m exploring.)
We know from his Six Flags and the Redskins failures that Snyder has room to grow as an organizational leader. Snyder is an entrepreneur by nature. Entrepreneurs struggle to lead thinking, learning organizations that harvests the best intellectual capital from other people their group. But, it is no surprise to see the Snyder team out front on technology like this.
Snyder was the first to recognize the 21st-Century mega-value of NFL teams. He knew from the beginning how to parse new income streams from the franchise. That’s why the Redskins are the league’s second most valuable franchise in spite of averaging seven wins a season during Snyder’s ownership. We (fans) need that income to fund the winning roster we hope to see whenever Snyder & company gets it right.
For the things that Dan Snyder does well, sales and marketing, we tip our Hog Heaven hat, because nothing happens until the sale is made.
Snit after: My spelling and grammar checker suggested changing the word salesman to sales clerk, sales representative or salesperson. When did “salesman” become a bad word?