Yogi Berra was one of a kind-- perhaps the greatest baseball player of all time. This son of Italian immigrants, he played on neighborhood sandlots as a kid and never lost his love of the game.
Berra added catcher to his batting skills. His specialty was reading the players and the field, where he was able to call pitches for batters. The 2022 documentary on his life, It Ain’t Over
is inspiring and a reminder of what hard work can bring.
But Berra wasn’t taken seriously by the general public. His squat physique and large ears were not what people expected of a New York Yankee. When he managed major league teams, his gentle manner wasn’t tough enough for sports insiders. And his down-home humor was often seen as buffoonish. Berra didn’t let opinions affect him. He played and managed without changing his affable, singular style.
Berra is a beacon for speakers. Find your lane and pursue it with laser focus. Berra famously said, “If you can’t imitate him, don’t copy him.” Your unique qualities, perspective and background is your roux, the binding agent in your secret sauce. Heat up the stove and start mixing.