Ricketts sheds light on what it's like to lead Cubs franchise

Ricketts sheds light on what it's like to lead Cubs franchise
June 21, 2013, 3:00 pm
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Tony Andracki

Cubs chairman Tom Ricketts recently sat down with the Sports Business Journal and shed some light on what it's like to run a sports organization, especially a high profile franchise like the Cubs.

Ricketts ran down his three keys to leading a sports organization, including setting the tone for all employees with the actions from above, setting goals and finding the right people for the right jobs.

Cubs ownership certainly believes they have found the right people to help the baseball side of things, when they lured Theo Epstein from Boston in the fall of 2011. Epstein completed his inner circle with hirings like general manager Jed Hoyer and senior vice president of scouting and development Jason McLeod.

[RELATED -- Cubs minor-league roundup: McLeod on Soler, Pierce Johnson, Vitters]

One of Ricketts' main objectives is to be as visible as possible. It's hard to argue his success in that area, as he may be the most visible owner in all of professional sports, save for maybe Mark Cuban of the Dallas Mavericks.

The Wrigley Renovation Watch has certainly helped that cause, as Ricketts has been in the media every few weeks as new developments arise.

"Cub fans have such a deep passion for the team and the park, and I want them all to know that we share that passion and we feel the pain in the losses and the joy in victories just like they do," Ricketts told SBJ.

"The other thing that's been very impressive is, everyone understands what we're doing. We've been very clear that this is an organization that's going to do things the right way. We're going to build a baseball culture that is smart, consistent and on a path to be a contender every year, and people get it."

The fanbase may understand the rebuilding process, but there are still moments when the frustration boils over. Check Twitter any time Carlos Marmol comes into the game in a save situation.

"There are mornings where you wake up at 3:30 a.m. feeling that 20 million Cubs fans are standing on your chest because you just have such a huge obligation to make sure that everything we do builds toward that championship," Ricketts said.

"We have a great management team, so I don’t sweat the details. I just sweat are we doing the right big-picture things to get that championship to our fans."

For more on this story, check out Sports Business Journal (subscription required).