Iditarod drops ceremonial start over crowd-size concerns

first_imgANCHORAGE, Alaska (AP) — There is another dramatic change for the Iditarod this year. Officials on Friday announced that the cfan-favorite ceremonial start for the world’s most famous sled dog race has been canceled over crowd-size concerns during the pandemic. The event usually draws large crowds to downtown Anchorage, where beer and food tents line city streets. Iditarod CEO Rob Urbach says they take the health and well-being of the racers, volunteers, staff and spectators very seriously. The race has been shortened this year, and it will start and finish north of Anchorage instead of having the finish line in Nome. There will be limited areas for spectators for the race’s start and end, and fans are encouraged to watch on television.last_img

What college basketball, bracketology and March Madness can teach you about business

first_imgThe Players: Master their game and elevate their teammates’ performance, positively engage with fans and supporters, and approach practices and game days with great discipline and continuous improvement. The Workforce: Master their game and elevate their teammates’ performance, positively engage and listen to clients, customers and the marketplace, and approach business practices and service with great discipline and continuous improvement. The Fans, Athletic Supporters and Administration: Invest in their program, raise its awareness with others, and actively support the program, in dollars and presence.Q: It’s very similar to a well-run business, isn’t it?A: The Who, The What and The How:The Leaders: Develop their team, lead the staff and build relationships with clients, customers and their board ~ through listening, engaged involvement and team support. They lead with focus and can capitalize on competitor weaknesses. They actively recruit, follow regulations and add value to the brand and healthy bottom line. The Clients, Consumers, Board and Community at large: Invest in the business’ services, raise its awareness with friends and family, and actively support and utilize products and services, with their dollars and common sense.Let’s reiterate a common theme in 2015: a healthy culture produces a healthy company and healthier bottom line. To clarify…. Culture is not just the “happy” and “engaged”. Culture is so much deeper and more strategic than “happy”In basketball, it’s more than just the game fundamentals. It’s learning to play as a team. It’s producing desired results (wins, on and off the court). Bringing out the best in each other, and sacrificing individual ego for team/school WeGo. Thinking strategically is a must, and knowing whose strength can be leveraged, especially when a blind spot is exposed. Then having the composure to stay in the game, win, and move on to the next challenge. A culture based on agility, collective skill and team mentality.Dynasties like:   UCLA, Duke, North Carolina, Kansas and KentuckyFast forward to the 21st century progressive business world, where innovative companies have made the pivot to team culture, operational interdependence, collaboration, and adaptability. Business is also moving in the direction of heterarchy (connectedness) and wirearchy (via humans with tech) and away from 20th century hierarchy (authority and control), yet another great parallel to share.Here we are. The NCAA tourney selection process completed. The final 68.Bracketology meet March Madness.March Madness, meet your maker.Rankings become seeds, bubbles get popped, top seeds can become upsets, #12’s can become Cinderellas, and everyone starts with a 0-0 record after March 15th.If it were simply a numbers game of predictive analytics, big data, algorithms and data analysis, we certainly wouldn’t need the madness.However…Rational analysis and the numbers game in basketball is only the science.We know, especially my fellow Hoosiers, that basketball is an art form, too.And so is business.center_img 19SHARESShareShareSharePrintMailGooglePinterestDiggRedditStumbleuponDeliciousBufferTumblr,Lisa Kuhn Phillips Lisa is a 25 year financial service executive, progressive organizational strategist and culture catalyst. She is also president/founder of inavision, LLC, a consulting firm specializing in Social Business Strategy … Web: www.inavisionGo.com Details I like college basketball. So much skill, teamwork, and excitement to be experienced every year in a few short weeks.And yes, I may be the only one who sees the parallels that exist in basketball with business strategy, modern-day corporate culture, and the NCAA tourney process.As Simon Sinek says, “Start with the Why”.Some thoughts on basketball. Many college players and recruits play for the love of the game. It’s their initial Why = Their passion for the sport. Believe it or not, coaches and fans have it, too. The great ones do, I believe. Some players look to the future and their opportunity to progress at the next level (pro). They dream of a great contract, a highly sought-after salary and the opportunity to play and win for a storied franchise, coach and/or star teammates. If that’s not in their immediate future, many stay committed to school, receive an experience they’ll never forget and realize the business side of ballin’ with a free degree.The same thoughts apply for a quality business vision and purpose.The initial Why = The passion for the vision and the value it can create. This business concept must fill a need, produce financial return and ‘community’ success. In fact, the business must stay agile and relevant to keep the investors, customers and a team committed and willing to champion the vision. The average ones – businesses and teams – sustain and remain. The great ones adapt to the marketplace, encourage new growth and believers, and actively recruit and develop talent and customers.   They stay focused on the quality products and services provided and know the value they produce for their clients, team and new leads. Growth and change becomes positive, ongoing results. Complacency won’t win.Q: So what does it take to keep the Why prosperous and relevant in basketball?A: The Who, the What and the How:The Coaches: Develop their team, lead the coaching staff and interact with supporters ~ through coaching, engaged involvement and supportive relationships. They coach with focus and can capitalize on competitor weaknesses. They actively recruit, follow regulations and add value to their school’s brand and healthy bottom line.last_img read more

Volleyball prepares for big test at home against Washington schools

first_imgThe second half of the Pac-10 season has begun, and the Women of Troy look to make their Homecoming weekend successful.The No. 8 USC women’s volleyball team welcomes the No. 7 Washington Huskies and the Washington State Cougars to the Galen Center this weekend. The team won both of its games last weekend for the first time in a month, and USC coach Mick Haley hopes the momentum carries into the team’s upcoming games.“I really feel like this weekend we need to have two really good efforts,” Haley said. “That’s what we’re pushing for.”USC is hoping for redemption Saturday night as it faces Washington, the first team to hand the Women of Troy a loss this season when it defeated USC in five sets in Seattle.“I didn’t think we were real sure of ourselves,” Haley said regarding USC’s first match this season against the Huskies. “I really felt like if we were a little bit more confident, we would have had a chance to steal one right there at Washington.”Haley also said he believes his team is more prepared for this match than it was for the earlier match against the Huskies, though Washington has improved throughout the season as well.Though Washington might appear to be the marquis game this weekend, Haley does not want to overlook the team’s first matchup this weekend against Washington State, a team that was swept by USC already this season and is still hungry to get its first Pac-10 win.“We’ve got to play Washington State first, and they’re much improved also, so we can’t really focus on Washington until we get by Washington State,” Haley said. “I think Washington State moves the ball around. I think they’re going to challenge us every which way they can.”The Women of Troy are currently tied for third in the conference with a record of 6-3. Despite the team’s most recent wins, Haley said he is still concerned about his young team’s focus, or more specifically, lack of focus.“I just think it’s right in the middle of the conference schedule right now. It’s real tough for everybody to stay alert and stay real aggressive, so we’ve been trying to get that all week in practice to push through each time and keep trying to get better,” Haley said.With a top-10 ranking and an overall record of 17-3, Haley cannot deny the talent of his team. For USC to come away with wins and move up in the conference standings, Haley is much more concerned with his team improving, rather than the strengths of any opponents. He specifically cited working on serving and serve reception.“We’re good in those areas. If we can bring it every night, we’re going to be in every match,” Haley said.The Women of Troy will play the Cougars tonight at 7 p.m. before playing a rare afternoon game Saturday against the Huskies at 3 p.m.last_img read more