Earlier this week, the Michigan Wolverines were crowned “Best in College Sports” by the NCAA for the 2021-2022 season, marking the first time a university has repeated this title.
This award measures the success of each athletic team from each university, accomplished by using a weighted formula that favors sports with the most fan interest.
Because of this formula, men’s basketball and men’s football are the weightiest sports on the scale, and Michigan’s consistency across the board was enough to take home this accolade.
“Consistency is the name of the game each year in CBS Sports’ Best in College Sports rankings, and no team was more dependable across the board across the last athletic season than the Michigan Wolverines. With 588.50 points, the Wolverines soared past Notre Dame to take home the crown for 2021-22, earning the Best in College Sports award for the second time in the last three seasons it has been awarded. UM is the first two-time winner in the award’s eight-season existence.
The National Association of College Directors of Athletics (NACDA) has ranked athletic programs for years by weighing every sport equally. (For example: National titles in football and water polo are worth the same number of points.) In 2013, CBS Sports began presenting its Best in College Sports award utilizing a weighted formula that recognizes sports with more broad interest. Every FBS program is rated in three sports — football, men’s basketball and women’s basketball — along with two “wild cards” among the school’s most successful spectator sports: baseball, softball, volleyball, soccer, gymnastics, lacrosse, hockey and wrestling.”
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What is interesting about this award in particular is that it takes into account the achievements of each university’s athletic department as a whole instead of honing in on the success of a specific team.
Many of us think about each team as its own entity, but the reality is that each sport is just a piece of the puzzle, a small percentage of individuals who represent the college by and large.
We consider the Michigan football team as separate from the basketball team, but the truth is that each of these groups has the same goal: represent the University of Michigan well and with pride.
This same idea can be applied to businesses. We tend to consider the marketing department as a separate entity than the sales force, and the same for the operations and HR departments. However, just like the Michigan athletic department, each of these groups is working towards the same goal.
In business, we sometimes focus too much on the success of each individual department without considering the ripple effect these accomplishments have on the rest of the company.
When your marketing department is crushing it, celebrate these wins, but don’t pit their success against your sales force. Recognize that each department works hard to support the goals of your business and that these groups are not in competition.
This article highlights the importance of consistency, and the same rings true for your business. Show up for each department every day and make sure they are doing the same.
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