No Undefeated Season

WARNING…  For those who have highly sensitive sports metaphor allergies, please take appropriate precautions before reading further!


I am an NFL football fan, and to be more specific I am an unashamed Seattle Seahawks football fan.  My allegiance as a “Seahawks 12th man” is significant since I live in South Carolina, and not be a Panthers or a Falcons fan you have to have the ability to really take a shot on the chin once in a while. As a Seahawks fan, I have learned two things. 1) (thankfully) I do not have a glass jaw, 2) I have to come to grips with the fact that the Seattle team does not lend itself well to an undefeated season. There is always that first regular season game that delivers us a Seahawks loss and I will have to accept the idea that we may go to the NFC Championship or even the Superbowl by the skin of our teeth. I guess there is no free lunch for the “12th man.”

Suffice it to say, in my more “practical life” leading healthcare supply chain teams, (as in Seahawks fandom) there are often mistakes and there’s always time to wrestle with the old “win some and learn some.”

I have learned that I can survive not having an undefeated season and even making it to the playoffs as a wild card if I accept some guidelines for what I am tolerant of making mistakes at and what I simply will not harbor as any loss as acceptable. Here are my top three beatitudes for making mistakes, winning, and losing, you will undoubtedly have more – and better guidelines of your own, and I would love to hear about them.


1: Be INTOLERANT of making mistakes defending the status quo, but accept mistakes made in the course of investing in the future.

2: Never “settle” for the sake of being expedient or good enough. Do however; practice being accepting of strategic compromise for a better end-to-end solution, especially if the compromise ultimately reduces duplicative work streams, clinical variation, low quality product, or all-in cost.

3: Don’t waste ANY time, energy, or organizational capital on detracting from – or building a case against a peer. Do invest some of your time and energy doing one kind thing for a half-dozen or so colleagues every day.


These beatitudes can be summed up in “know what the potential for the future holds, care about making the today’s potential tomorrow’s reality, and ease the way for those who play a role in bringing it all to fruition… And in that pursuit the ‘WIN some’ is so substantial that you can happily accept the ‘lose some’ as the price of success.”

Well, the Seahawks have vowed to work on their offensive line over the summer… so for now – next season is shaping to up to be 16 and 0! Ok, probably not… But as of today, we have as good a shot at conference champion as anyone else.

A special note to my healthcare supply chain colleagues… Until next we meet, I appreciate all you do to fill the hands that heal!

To all: may the some you win, be truly outstanding; and the some you lose summed up as brief learning moments along the journey to all success!



Please visit my N=5 Supply Chain Blog to participate in discussions on, demonstrating fiscal accountability, how to stop doing stupid stuff, and effective ways to manage purchased services expense.


The OutSideIn blog will help you to get started planning a high-value approach to multi-channel reverse supply chain.

Thank you



Timothy Hagler is an experienced supply chain leader, with an ever-accelerating interest in earnestly connecting stakeholders with creative ideas to meet new economic realities for healthcare providers. Tim has enjoyed an excellent track record of achievement and advancement earned through demonstrated contribution to bottom-line results, employing strong solutions architecture, analytic and financial skills in challenging, multi-client environments. Tim and his lovely wife Kandy enjoy spending time at the beach in South Carolina. Tim’s hobbies include photography, American folk music, and writing about himself in the third person.



  1. Dave Hunter · March 21, 2016

    Excellent analogy. Pete Carroll is Mr. Positive with his team and the results show.


  2. Pingback: The Velveteen Internet of Things – Healthcare Supply Chain leaders better get comfortable with new hyperconnectivity “made real!” |

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