The well-documented argument over many years about the Australian ODI cricket team’s rotation policy normally focuses on player welfare versus keeping a player in form.

For some of the best cricketers in the Australian ODI team, they may play a dozen one-day matches in a summer in addition to six tests and a couple of Twenty20 Internationals. They don’t see any big deal in having a rest from the occasional one-day match as they can play in another match next week.

I believe they are missing the most important part—the spectators.

Some people who attend an ODI match look forward to that one game all year. They save their money and buy their tickets and plan for weeks before the game. These same people pay the wages for the cricketers and administrators. You can imagine the disappointment when a fan turns up wearing his favourite player’s shirt and has his sign ready to wave to his favourite player—and then finds out he has been rested from the match today. His one opportunity to see this player has been removed.

Even Dr. W. G. Grace (18 July 1848–23 October 1915) understood the concept when during an exhibition match, he was given out lbw. He refused to walk and told the bowler: “They came to watch me bat, not you bowl.”

We sometimes make that same mistake in our businesses. We need to make sure our best team is always on display and always “up” for the occasion. We need to put our best foot forward every single time. It is not good enough to say, “Sorry about mess on the floor, but we have been unpacking new stock.”

Treat every interaction with a client just like you are on a first date. If you were on a first date with someone you wanted to impress, you would have your best clothes on and use your best manners and take the person to a nice restaurant—you may only have one chance to impress. Sometimes you only get one chance to impress a client. You have seven seconds to make that impression—make sure it is a positive one.

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