What type of Player are you?

A crude drawing, but alas, this is how learning and meetings are done. Atleast its not on a napkin, right?

One thing I learned from working in start-ups, and various groups is that your organization will live or die based on your team. An amazing and cohesive team will get you far, but one bad apple could bring you back to reality…and fast.

“A” players are the people who make things happen. Think Steve Jobs. Although he faced extreme failure (getting fired from Apple), he also faced amazing success (starting Pixar, Apple comeback). He never allowed his failures to shape his life. Moreover, regardless of his leadership style, the point is, an A player puts their heart and soul into everything they do and learn from their failures for greater successes.

“C” players are clean slates, fresh and ready to be molded into an A player or B player. Typically, C players are college/university grads with no experience. They spend their first year learning and being trained. Then, they either hit success or go into a B player pattern.

Now, the player you’ve all been waiting for, its the notorious B player. The most dangerous player of them all. Actually, B players can be split into two types: one is unreasonable, unprofessional and can be easily dismissed for poor behaviour. Fine. The other more common B player is the composed, professional and highly mature individual. He/she may be kind hearted and a lovely person, but this is not personal, this is business. When it comes to business, the B player will never leave their comfort zones for failure or success. They will work in the small confines and not budge. If questioned about their behaviour, they will smartly weigh heavily on their small successes, and dismiss their lesser failures. They have an answer and argument for everything and more time is wasted in circular thinking than getting things done.

When faced with a B player, the best option is to literally leave, of course this is when you have a choice. In most cases, you don’t and you just have to ignore the B player, smile, nod and do the heavy lifting yourself. Not the best long term strategy, but in the process you learn a great deal of patience, and self-acceptance. Eventually, things have a way of working themselves out. As an A player (assuming you are one :)), you will attract other A players and better opportunities will come your way.

2 thoughts on “What type of Player are you?

  1. Solid post Jas!

    So your scale is based on two dimensions, experience and ability to execute/attitude?

    I’ve come across other scales, that are based on leadership, attitude, experience and ability to “ship” (contribute), tenacity, dedication, scrappiness etc.

    In any case, fit within a team is everything.. better to hire slow and fire fast from my experience in being a founder and team player.

    And I believe the other company Steve was responsible for was “Pixar” 😉

  2. The scale is based on success and failure (vertical) over time – nothing else. Its assumed that through the extremes of failure vs success the attributes you mentioned come out.

    Thanks for pointing out the typo 🙂

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