1.1 WHY is Having a Sports Career Game Plan Important? [VIDEO]

We have to start with the WHY.

Why is having a Sports Career Game Plan so important?

As a student you have a distinct advantage, call it leverage against the rest of the world, you have time. However, that time can easily be wasted.

Before you know it, graduation will be here, and the expectations of the real world will come knocking at your doorstep. Rent, food, bills - this is real (Yes, I am trying to scare you a little.)

Ask yourself right now, do you want to look back someday soon and think, “I wish I took a more proactive approach to my job preparation” or do you want to think, “I got this!”

That’s the entire point of this course, to utilize the time you have, making you the best possible candidate for jobs in the sports industry when you graduate. This plan and approach will set you up for lasting success.

Video Transcript:

I know what you're thinking right now, "Why do I even need a sports career game plan? I'm taking all these courses; they're supposed to make me smarter. I'm in college, right? I know everything there is about sports. I love sports. I know statistics. I can tell you anything. I've won my fantasy league. I'm going to graduate and get hired. No big deal."

If it only worked that way.

That would make everything so much easier, wouldn't it? But it doesn't, it's demanding work. There's a strategy you need to set up and there's tactics you need to employ, starting now, to make yourself the best possible candidate and to make yourself stand out when you start applying for jobs. We can do this. We can do it together. And that's why we're doing it.

I don't want you in the bottom half of that resume stack. I want you in the top five, right?

I want you in the game. I want you getting the phone interviews, getting the video interviews, getting the face-to-face interviews, and turning it into something.

That's what we're working on.

Now, what makes this course able to do that? Well, not only do I pull from my 20 years of experience in the sports industry, I started out at CNN/Sports Illustrated as a production assistant, associate producer, producer, went on to work at Fox Sports Northwest as a coordinating producer and news director. I've been at WorkInSports.com for the last 8 years as VP of Content. Not only do I pull from all my own experience in hiring and firing and managing and budgeting and all those things, but I've also interviewed hundreds of sports executives, okay?

Mailynh Vu, the assistant director of talent acquisition for the Cleveland Indians, interviewed her.

Colleen Scoles, the talent acquisition manager for the Philadelphia Eagles.

Brian Killingsworth, CMO (Chief Marketing Officer) of the Vegas Golden Knights.

Gloria Nevarez, commissioner of the West Coast Conference.

Bryan Srabian, who's the senior VP of digital media and brand development.

I've interviewed with all these people and talked to them about:

  • What do you look for when you're hiring?
  • How do you pull out a resume from the stack?
  • What are you looking for, for cultural fit?

All these things, and it's all in this course. That's what we're going to focus on.

Ok, so when you go through this course, there's going to be four major pillars. The first one, the first module is gaining the right experience. I emphasize RIGHT because so many of you will go into this experience and say, "I need to do two internships. So, I'm going to check the box and do two internships."

That's not going to cut it. Okay?

There needs to be a strategy and tactics employed behind choosing the right internships. Volunteer opportunities, job shadowing, informational interviews, there's so much more you need to be doing to have a full and robust resume.

At the same time, in the next module, we're going to talk about networking. Right now, there's probably not that many people that you know in the industry, and it is important to get to know people. I hate the saying, and you'll hear me say this a lot, I hate the saying, "It's not what you know, it's who you know," because to me, that's a cop-out.

That's very old school thinking.

You don't need to just know somebody and get hired. That doesn't happen anymore. There's no more like, "Oh, I'm hiring this person because they know this other person that I'm friends with." And then they do a terrible job and I look bad. It doesn't work that way.

It's a saying that people say that doesn't make any sense. But networking is still important. Building relationships is still important. The two things go hand in hand, building experience, skills, and having a network of people that you know who can vouch for you, who can give you information, who can teach you things. We're going to get deep into that. We're going to help you start from nothing and build it to something that is strong.

Then we're going to get into all your portfolio materials, your resume, your cover letter, your personal brand, always important things that'll speak for you.

Don Costante, who is also featured in this course, he is the Kansas City Royals director of game presentation. I interviewed him, and one of the major things he said repeatedly is your resume needs to be the best piece of material you've ever produced. It's the best paper. It's the best research document. It's the best thing you've ever produced. Because that is your representation out there in the market. That is how people are going to evaluate you. Whether it's a two-dimensional piece of paper or not, that's how they're going to see you. Your cover letter's your story. Your personal brand and the way you use social media. All of this is particularly important to build the whole story of you, and we're going to share strategies on that as well.

Then we're going to get into the final module, which is on interviewing. All that process of video interviews, phone interviews, face-to-face interviews, nothing else matters.

If you go through this entire course, and you get the right experience, and you build your network, and you have a great resume and cover letter and all those materials, and you bomb the interview, you're not getting anywhere. You got to really focus on that part of the process and making sure you show yourself in the best possible light. That's our fourth module. And it's super, super, super important.

That's how this is going to work. You are all going to end up finishing this and feel more confident and stronger in your ability to go out there into the marketplace and be a match for sports employers. Be the person that they want to hire. So important. So, let's get to work.

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