SURPRISE, Ariz. -- When Royals general manager Dayton Moore is asked to speak to business groups in the greater Kansas City area -- and you can bet the requests have been more frequent in the wake of consecutive American League pennants and a World Series win -- he hands out a laminated card outlining seven principles for organizational harmony.
All seven are important, of course, and we won't play spoilers here and reveal them all, in the event that your office has a Moore meeting on the docket. But one stands out in the wake of a title: Share the glory.
A distinct memory from the aftermath of Game 5 at Citi Field is Moore, dry as a bone (notable, considering his champagne-soaked surroundings) and sitting in the visiting dugout for what must have been at least half an hour, holding court with reporters. This wasn't some self-congratulating session in which Moore recapped all the many moves he had made to lead to that point. He wasn't seeking the spotlight but, rather, shining it on the players, the staff, the scouts and even the clubhouse guys who made it happen.
And this, Royals people will tell you, is the typical mindset of a man who orchestrated the remarkable rise in relevance of the Royals organization.
"He's the ultimate professional," first baseman Eric Hosmer said. "To be with him through the bad years and see how he reacted and see how he's been the same guy with the success, he's a guy I definitely look up to. You try to model yourself off the field after him, because he does things the right way."
You usually don't hear many players speaking of front-office folk with such reverence. You certainly wouldn't expect to hear a 6-foot-4 26-year-old to say he "looks up" to the 49-year-old Moore, whose proficiency is packed into a small physique.
But even before the Royals were the sources of such rampant replication (funny how quickly the concepts of contact, defense and a bullish bullpen have caught on in a copycat industry), Moore earned the respect of his underlings with his patience and his lack of pretension.
"You just don't want to let him down," said Royals director of professional scouting Gene Watson, who also worked with Moore in Atlanta. "He's so compassionate to everybody and their families, and there's just no ego. His purpose in life is greater than the game."
Moore delegates, and this is a concept that's more rare than it ought to be. Scouts run the scouting meetings. Coaches run the coaches meetings. He views his role -- the official title is senior vice president of baseball operations and general manager -- not as the organization's czar but its caretaker.
"You get good people and free them up to do their job and make battlefield decisions, if you will," Moore said. "Whether it be their territory as a scout so they can be creative and come up with outside-the-box ideas or coaches and instructors and managers having the freedom to make the best decisions for the future of the player.
"These things work better the less the front office is involved. There has to be structure, an authority figure, somebody who will press the leadership button with conviction once they are ready to move forward. But if you focus on the environment, the rest takes care of itself."
You have to wonder if a Dayton Moore-type could even get hired as a general manager today. He's no Ivy League whiz kid. The guy went to Garden City Community College and George Mason and got his degree in physical education. But with the Royals, who hired him away from the Braves a decade ago, he's created a culture that draws from both the traditional (89-year-old scout Art Stewart is a valued organizational mainstay) and the analytical (yes, the Royals do have a quantitative group that includes those Ivy Leaguers), and it's one he is adamant about protecting from the potential pitfalls of success.
"We're not about to let anybody come in and infect us," Moore said. "I'm not a confrontational person, but I'm highly motivated to confront attitudes or performances that are going to destroy our culture."
Success can change people and businesses, and not often in a good way. Self-interests -- the next internal promotion or industry advancement -- can begin to supersede the interests that elevated you to that position in the first place.
But in both victory and defeat on the game's biggest stage, Moore has demonstrated a determination to always be pushing forward.
"When we lost to the Giants, after Game 7, we had a sort of pep rally for the team at the ballpark, and all of us in the front office were standing along the back wall behind home plate," Watson recalled. "The rally ends, and we go through the second level, go into the interior elevator and up to our office. For about three hours, you could hear a pin drop. It was like a library. And then Dayton says, 'Come to my office.' We all sit down in his office, and he puts up the list of six-year Major League free agents and says, 'OK, let's go.'"
That obviously worked out quite well, as the Royals' targeting of low-key free-agent acquisitions helped sustain and build upon the 2014 success. But where do the Royals go now that they've won it all for the first time in a generation?
"We had the parade," Watson said. "The next morning we were in meetings. That Friday we were at the [Arizona] Fall League. It's all about what's next."
The Royals have two years left in their window, or so says the industry consensus. Hosmer, Mike Moustakas, Alcides Escobar, Lorenzo Cain, Wade Davis and the newly signed Ian Kennedy (via an opt-out) are all eligible for free agency after 2017. Baseball doesn't dwell on its darlings for long, and Moore's group will face an entirely new set of challenges.
"We know the bill's going to come eventually," Watson said. "But that's when we get to show the creative side of taking one of these chips and spinning it off for talent. Complacency has never been allowed to set in. We have a very humble group that works hard."
Moore is a humble leader, and that was never more evident than in the aftermath of Game 5. You learn as much about people in professional sports in how they handle success as how they handle failure, and Moore was as gracious a World Series winner as you could hope to encounter.
Share the glory, indeed. And while all the usual elements (free-agent defections, innings accruals, the possibility of complacency) that make repeating so darn difficult do stand as hurdles for the Royals in 2016, you can't overlook the ability of an organization full of people who feel empowered and enabled to maximize its potential.
Moore helped create that climate, and he intends to preserve it.
"I hope we're representing the game well," he said. "We've got to work at it every day. It's not going to stay strong just because we want it to."
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Anthony Castrovince is a Sports on Earth contributor, MLB.com columnist and MLB Network contributor. Follow him on Twitter @Castrovince.