Watching sport is a pastime enjoyed by a large percentage of the population. It unites people from all backgrounds and is an excellent way to unwind after a hard day at work or to share your passion with like-minded people. There can be more to a sport than simply an exciting hour or two. An article by Inc.com looked at the lessons that business people can learn from football. Here, Pantheon UK reviews this article and look at how relevant it is for businesses in the UK.
“We play football with a different shaped ball, and in a very different way, to the football, they know in the United States, but many of the fundamentals are still the same”, said Nikesh Patel, managing director of Pantheon UK. “That’s why this article is as relevant here as it is across the Atlantic. I love watching football myself, and I’m convinced that the lessons I’ve taken from the great game have helped both my clients and me.”
The report looks at how playing American Football in college helped entrepreneur and business leader Matt Engel become better in the boardroom as well as on the sports field. The first lesson he learned was how important teamwork and strategy are. For directors and managers, we can substitute coaches and captains. The best teams have a carefully thought out strategy, that’s flexible enough to take whatever’s thrown at it. The same applies to business. Prior and careful planning can give you the competitive edge over rivals.
The second lesson is to learn from mistakes. Whether it’s gridiron or soccer, the greatest players the world’s ever seen will still make errors from time to time. They learn from them and come back fighting. Entrepreneurs have to realise that they will make mistakes and that things will go wrong from time to time. By becoming more resilient, they can improve their chances of future success. Sporting success is based upon a mix of great preparation and gut instinct. Entrepreneurs have to learn to trust their own feelings and be prepared to take bold decisions.
“The three lessons outlined are some of the most important that an entrepreneur can learn”, said Nikesh Patel of Pantheon UK. “Before making a big business decision, or before going into an important meeting, visualise yourself as Lionel Messi about to take the field at the Nou Camp. He has total confidence in what he does, and that’s why he achieves spectacular results time after time.”
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