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A Sporting Approach Toward Career Management

Tennis icon Billie Jean King once remarked, “A champion is afraid of losing. Everyone else is afraid of winning.” This should get you thinking about the important life lessons that sport teaches: perseverance in the face of obstacles, honesty, integrity, sportsmanship. Aren’t these some of the same qualities that our most prominent—and promising—business leaders possess? No doubt many of these qualities were picked up in the gym or out on the schoolyard, which is why it’s distressing when sports and academics are pitted against each other as mutually exclusive endeavors. Sports are an important part of education, teaching the value of teamwork and other career enhancing skills like strategy, goal setting, feedback and review.  Would it surprise you to learn that the Olympics are referred to as the biggest peacetime event in modern history? Regardless whether you’re a sports fanatic, watch a game and ask yourself what lessons can be learned and applied in your working life based on the conduct of the players towards themselves and the opposing team, the strategies employed, the reactions of the fans, the interplay between the coach and the team and the commentary. You’ll likely never watch a game the same way again.

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