8 Lessons an Entrepreneur Can Learn From Sports

By | November 4, 2018

[November 4, 2018]  Today’s global entrepreneurship scene is busier than ever before. Today’s leaders are able to tap into a wide range of different disciplines from meditation and yoga to behavioural economics and predictive analytics.

At the same time, stress and burnout are real threats that can affect all of us. That’s why entrepreneurs are starting to think more like sportspeople at the highest level.

1.   Warmups are important

Professional sportspeople warm up before the game to reduce the likelihood of injuries and to promote peak performance. Entrepreneurs can follow in their footsteps by preparing for the day with some light meditation and reflection.

2.    Passion wins games

As an entrepreneur, it’s likely that you’re already passionate about what you do, but that passion needs to be contagious if you want to inspire the same levels of passion and performance from your employees.

3.   Make marginal gains

Team GB cycling coach Dave Brailsford has much to do with the popularisation of marginal gains (making a series of small improvements that have a big effect over time). In Brailsford’s case, they tested the aerodynamics of different helmets and clothing. Take advantage of every edge you can.

4.   Know when to play by the rules

Rules are rules for a reason, and a good sportsperson knows when to abide by them and when there’s a little flexibility or room for interpretation. Entrepreneurs need to know the rules in the first place if you want to break them.

5.   It’s a team game

Sometimes entrepreneurs try to take on too much. Sports teams remind us that there’s no point having a star player unless they’re playing as a part of a team. A well-disciplined team will always beat a field of star players who all want to hog the ball.

6.   Substitutes are okay

Sometimes we don’t quite have the team in place that we need for a specific task. When that happens, instead of hiring an entirely new team for a single job, we can substitute in a freelancer. That applies whether you’re hiring a user experience specialist from Upwork or a copywriter from EssayOnTime.

7.   Training makes a difference

Every professional sports team has a coach that helps them to perform at the best, and the same should be true in the business world. Smart entrepreneurs provide ongoing training across all levels of the organisation.

8.   All you can do is try

Sometimes you can do everything right and still lose a match. In both sports and the business world, there are a lot of different elements at work which all affect the end result. As an entrepreneur, you need to accept that all you can do is try.

What’s next?

Simply recognising that you can learn from sports teams isn’t enough. Instead, you need to take what you’ve learned today and to apply it to your life. The key is to find out what works for you and to stick with it.

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Author: Jacob Dillion

Jacob Dillon is a professional writer and distinctive journalist from Sydney, Australia. Being passionate about what he does, Jacob likes to discuss stirring events as well as express his opinion about technological advancements and evolution of society. Find Jacob on Twitter and Facebook.

11 thoughts on “8 Lessons an Entrepreneur Can Learn From Sports

  1. Wilson Cox

    Good article for my Sunday-morning read. Thanks Jacob. Enjoy the day!

    Reply
  2. Mr. T.J. Asper

    Thanks Jacob for an easy to read the article on a subject that is particularly dear to my heart. I teach at the High School level and coach football (American football). What you have written here are some of the things I mentor my players and students on daily. Some are a little hard headed but most of it eventually sinks in. Thanks.

    Reply
    1. Jacob Dillon

      Thanks a lot for such a great feedback. It’s nice to hear that such a professional as you are share my point of view!

      Reply
  3. Gil Johnson

    Nice to hear from our brethren from “down under.” I thoroughly enjoyed your post today.

    Reply
  4. Lady Hawk

    Hey Mr. Dillion. Great article on how sports makes us better leaders … and better people too. Sometimes, I wonder about the crazy fans. Playing sports, however, is great even when you lose a game.

    Reply
  5. Dale Paul Fox

    Very interesting take on how sports can teach us lessons about how to be a good leader. I like your comment on rules being there for a reason but also where there might be a little wiggle room.

    Reply
  6. Danny Burkholder

    As a regular reader of General Satterfield’s leadership blog, I really like it when guest bloggers give their analysis and insights into what leadership is like and is about. Good job todya, Mr. Dillion on your fine piece. Sports is a great way to learn more about leading. Thank you. All the best to our Australian friends.

    Reply

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