by Dana Cavalea February 05, 2020


Hi Team...

Yesterday, I had a great meeting in Florida with fellow author and speaker, Bob Burg- author of the Go Giver.

Bob for most of his career traveled the country giving talks, inspiring sales teams to reach their max potential, and now, he is really happy doing what he "wants" to do..

Less travel. More reading. More writing. More baseball. What?

More baseball?

Yup. More to come on this...

Why do I share this story when most of you may not even know who Bob is?

Well, as we were talking about what seemed to be Bob's true passion, baseball, we got talking about the game as a whole....

How the game has changed, evolved, and developed since he was a fan as a kid say 50 years ago...

Things change.

Sometimes for the good, sometimes for the bad, sometimes bad, then good again.

As we were talking about some "speaking topics" for me to share with teams, companies, and organizations, we arrived at the topic of Signing Bonus' and giving away too much too soon to players that are not yet deserving.

Have you ever done that as a Leader to retain talent?

Maybe as a way of attracting talent?

Did that help the individual? Maybe it did in that moment.

But, did it hurt the team who may have been spectators of this persuasive event?

You retained the talent on your team by "giving", but, did that put a bad taste, a bitterness, and maybe even some resentment in the minds of the rest of the team that was not courted as such?

Well, I saw this in Pro Ball quite a bit.

The story I told Bob was of a younger player named Andrew Brackman.

An NC State Phenom basketball player who chose baseball over basketball when it came draft time.

Andrew was represented by Baseball Super Agent, Scott Boras who is known for pushing the limits on contract terms.

In addition to the millions he was given for just signing with the Yankees, there was another guarantee in his deal: An annual Spring Training Invite to Big League Camp.

Meaning, he was able to SKIP minor league camp and join the big boys right away...

Now, being invited to Big League Camp is an amazing honor.

It is a sign the Organization sees a big future in you, and, you have a true shot at making it to the big leagues within the next 2 seasons or so.

What an amazing feeling the players get from this showing of trust.

This player though, well, he got to skip the minor league camp grind...

He got to skip the peanut butter sandwiches and Campbells Soup for lunch... 

He got the same treatment as players that had fought their way to the top...

How did it work out?

Well, he never made it to the Big Leagues.

He never really seemed comfortable in Big League Camp because of how the deal was set up...

There is something within us that tells us: We did not earn it.

So how could you possibly feel comfortable knowing that all of those around you gave it all they had to be there and you were gifted it.

Understand this, Andrew was and is an amazing guy.

It was not his fault at all and this is in no way a knock on him and his amazing talent.

The new system and way of building contracts was the issue.

The lesson here is this:

When you GIVE things to people without them having to fight, endure, claw their way to earning it, they take it for granted.

They take YOU for granted.

At that point, you may have killed their fight indefinitely, or, you may have killed your culture as a result of this tactic.

  1. Make people earn it.
  2. Make them sweat.
  3. Make them work through some of the challenges.

When they get on the other side, they will have not only new skills- but more fight than ever to never go back to where they came from.

Derek Jeter never wanted to ride a minor league bus again- so, as a result he worked his butt off and never went back on the bus!

Let's GO!

Your Coach,


Dana Cavalea
Dana Cavalea

Dana Cavalea is the World Champion Director of Strength and Conditioning & Performance of the New York Yankees. Currently, he is a High Performance Speaker & Consultant to Pro Athletes, Entrepreneurs, Business Executives, and Workforces on lifestyle strategies to reduce stress, improve work/life integration, and most importantly improve daily performance /outcomes. Book Dana to Speak at your Company Event or Conference Today!

2 Responses


January 24, 2023

Very helpful advice in this particular post! It’s the little changes that make the largest changes. Thanks for sharing!
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March 11, 2021

Muchas gracias. ?Como puedo iniciar sesion?

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