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  • johannaj59

Work and play should mix

I have often written about the similarities between sport and business. The reason I do so is simple. People seem to instinctively understand sport. They recognise the need for teamwork, for balance, for winning. And they do so in a way that often gets missed in business. Have you ever asked why sport should be so different?. It could be that sport is so clearcut. There is always a winner and a loser, or the third result, a draw. In sport nearly every individual has a clearly defined role - and there are no hiding places. We all know when we are not performing. Without a good scoring system of course there would be nothing to watch. No spectator could enjoy or and make sense of the action, but neither could the participants get any feedback. And no serious team would ever hope to reach the top wirthout both a good recruitment policy and a development scheme. No club could survive or develop anyone without letting proven high flyers and experienced players pass their skills to the next generation. Rarely would a team of 20 year-olds to win the Premier League, neither would a team of 35 year-olds. And I doubt whether any of you would really disagree with any of this. It is the blindingly obvious, just a statement of fact, no one will contradict me. Except if I suggect it is just as true in business. Then my audience will be divided, some will agree wholeheartedly (look at some of the most successful operators out there) and some will think it's a bit of a waste of time, a luxury, a pool of talent for others to fish in and to poach from. I guess it comes down to the following - do we view our people as a resource that needs to be nurtured, nourished and developed? Do good people do good things and make good money for you? Or are they a millstone around your neck, a cost to be minimised, a resource to be exploited? I guess the latter group won't win many trophies and they'll probably underperform in business too. So perhaps they could learn a lot from sport - learn to enjoy their work, to direct their teams and to succeed in their business as well as many top sports men and women. At least it's a start. If only we could earn as much money as Wayne Rooney too - I'd only have to work a week a year.

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