What can we learn career-wise from athletes as we get ready to watch the winter games? Plenty! Beyond being impressed by their athleticism, there are other takeaways and tips from their prowess to be the best that can transform your career.
1) Learn and follow the rules of the game
Just like every sport has its own rules and regulations, so does your job search. Start by committing to read up on the latest career advice online, subscribing to blogs (like this one), and following career pros on social media (especially LinkedIn). Check out this list of career experts on Twitter to get started.
2) Be patient, prepared and willing to sacrifice
During competition, the athletes make it look so easy. However, months and years of preparation have led to their special moment during the games. What you don’t see are the early morning practices, late nights, injuries, exhaustion and sacrifice. As a job seeker, you also need to be prepared to put in substantial effort to get your medal – that new job! It may take a while, and it’s not always easy. Nothing worthwhile ever is.
3) No Excuses
Professional athletes are accustomed to grueling workouts and schedules. Procrastination and excuses aren’t conducive to winning medals. We’re not suggesting you should wake up at 4 a.m. and adhere to a super strict training plan, but you do need to have some sort of goal oriented schedule. The competition is fierce out there – hundreds of people are applying for a limited number of positions. If you’re not bringing your best game, you will lose out to other job seeking competitors.
4) Embrace the experience
Athletes work hard and play hard. For your job search, the goal is to achieve a balance and things to look forward to throughout the process. It doesn’t have to be costly or complicated. Something simple like rewarding yourself with a special coffee when you finish a resume update may give you that added incentive to keep going. Decide beforehand what your perks will be.
5) Be your own coach
You may not have a world renowned athletic coach guiding you, but you can embrace a better attitude and philosophy. It helps to think bigger picture. You may never love writing cover letters. However, you’re not just trying to get a new or better job -you’re also improving your writing, communication and networking skills. This slight change of perspective can help motivate you to keep persevering towards your goals.
6) Reap the rewards
Few of us will ever know what it’s like to bring home the gold for our country. But, your gold medal is the job you get – the one that helps you provide for yourself and your family. Victory comes in many shapes and forms. Be proud of the journey and your results!
7) Have a post-game plan
The games end and athletes need to have a plan for what’s next – whether that be endorsements, other competitions, renewed training or even retirement. When you land a new job, your next step is important. Be thoughtful about how you start that new role. It’s time to prove yourself once again, show your enthusiasm and deliver on the promises you made during the interview.
Hopefully, this post has you thinking about your job search from a different, more sports oriented point of view. The parallels are there. Let us be your coach – learn from these lessons and grow during your quest for a new position. You’re stronger and more prepared than you think! Know that we’re happy to provide career advice and resources along the way.
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Visit us at Oldcastle Careers.
Photo Credit: Pixaby
Oldcastle is North America’s largest manufacturer of building products and materials. With more than 2,000 locations throughout North America, we are in constant pursuit of the next generation of successful decision makers, leaders and problem solvers. Learn more about joining the Oldcastle team HERE.
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