How To Get A Sports Job – espnW Summit
Katrina Galas: Hi, it’s Katrina Galas from the Warsaw Sports Marketing Center’s MBA program at the University of Oregon. I recently had the opportunity to attend the ESPNW Summit in Tucson, Arizona that brought together many of the sports business leaders from across the country. I asked a few of them if they would [...]
Katrina Galas: Hi, it’s Katrina Galas from the Warsaw Sports Marketing Center’s MBA program at the University of Oregon. I recently had the opportunity to attend the ESPNW Summit in Tucson, Arizona that brought together many of the sports business leaders from across the country. I asked a few of them if they would share some advice for women hoping to become leaders in the sports industry, and I wanted to share their messages with you. If I could share some advice, I’d say that similar to how athletes need to train in the cities they’re competing in, business leaders need to put themselves in situations where they can educate themselves and connect with others in the industry. That’s what the ESPNW Summit was all about.
Christine Driessen: First, understanding the type of business you want to be in, whether you want to be in the league side or the business side, whether it’s a network or a cable program, or, or an agent. Just decide which avenue of sports you want to go into, and you have to go into something where you have great passion for. Uh, all of us work so hard in this business, and I think it’s really important as young people come up with the organizations to have a passion for what you want, and go for it. Do not by shy. Be confident. Speak concisely. But go for it, bottom line.
Laura Gentile: I would certainly recommend that you set very clear goals for yourself and have a good sense of what path you want to take, but know that you can do anything you want to do. So don’t get too crazy that, you know, the path that you set, you have to stay on. Because there’s a lot of adventure out there, there’s a lot of opportunity out there. You need ultimately to show that you are a results-driven person who can make things happen, and you’re somebody to be, uh, trusted and trusted in from just an intelligence perspective and a go-getter perspective.
Rita Benson Le Blanc: It’s all about impression, and it’s all about feeling. So, if you walk in and you look sharp and professional, that’s what you’re translating. And there’s too many young people that are very, very self-involved as to “what experience am I getting out of it?” And in interviews and conversations, it’s like, “this is what I want” and that kind of thing. You’re being hired for a job and you need to fulfill those needs for your employer. And once you do that, you earn that family sense, you know, you earn your way into the culture of that company. But if you’re not satisfying those basic job skills and fulfilling those needs, you’re going beyond fulfilling those needs and just being that exemplary, then you’re just not going to get as far. So, I think it’s important for people to be self-aware and know what you really want out of the job, but then you can kind of keep it to yourself. You know, I mean, people are, are, are excited and happy to mentor and help. But, um, there’s a lot about the generations that I’ve seen through the universities and things like that where, where, um, no, your, your job is to make someone else’s life easier and to make this company successful. And what can you do to do that, and how can you do more to do that? And in the process, you should learn, and then you’ll be a better person, um, overall for that company. And it, it’s amazing the people that ask, they don’t get as far. But the people that lead through example, I will do so much and I will help them to find other jobs in sports, because that’s strengthening the entire industry. So, in terms of thinking big picture, I care about what’s happening in sports in general and, um, you know, not just our team, but also the league, as far as the NFL goes. So, when you go into your job, know what your employer wants, and that will make life a lot easier.
Amy Rosenfeld: My thing was, I was a huge sports fan. My earliest memory of family was going to Bruins games with my father, ‘cause he had season tickets. And I, you know, graduated undergrad and I was like, “okay, now what do I do?” Every summer, I’d worked in a summer camp, I was not organized like you guys are. And I was like, “well, what do I like to do? Well, I like sports and I like to watch TV. Maybe I can do that.” So, for me it was just, you know, I’m gonna try this. It never sort of occurred to me, because I had always played sports. Frankly, I’m so much older than all you guys, I had to play with the boys. So, I was always used to having boys all around me, and it just felt like normal. The biggest thing, I think, is to, it’s sort of the advice I gave you guys, which is when you feel uncomfortable about pushing and trying to get your foot in the door, just push a little beyond your comfort level. That’s the biggest thing for all of these industries that are extremely popular. I mean, you guys are interested in something that’s really popular, so you just have to be willing to, you know, overextend yourself. And when you get that business card, follow up with them. If, if they don’t follow up with you, they’re a jerk. Because I followed up with someone, as I said to you guys. I was bugging someone and felt uncomfortable, but someone embraced me, and I always vowed I would embrace them. So, if someone doesn’t follow up with you, they’re really a jerk. Um, the last thing I would say is that I think that we really are moving in the right direction, that women are entering the men’s field and it’s not that big a deal. I, I think it’s all about confidence. When I show up at the TV truck, and it will be me and thirty guys, and I’m in charge of those thirty guys, I just walk in carrying myself in a way that says I belong here, but I’m your partner. Um, I’m not going to be a bitch. I’m not going to be, um, bossy. I’m going to be your partner. It just happens that, you know, I pee with the seat down and you don’t. I mean, that’s really. So, if you can just carry yourself like you belong there, just like when I was seven years old playing with the boys in soccer. I, fortunately it was still the age when all the girls and boys were the same height and weight, that changed quickly. I just felt like, you know, I, I belonged, and, and they accepted me, because I didn’t feel like I was an outsider. Um, so that’s sort of my, that’s sort of my advice and just that um, contacts are a good thing. It’s like, uh, what I said to you guys. The hardest part for all of us was getting into college. Once you get there, it’s what you make it. But there’s a million people competing to get in, so don’t be ashamed. There’s no shame in being a bit of a nudge. I’m Jewish, so I can say nudge. There’s no shame in sort of saying I, I really want me. It’s like, confident but not cocky. I know that you ladies both have that, and hopefully your classmates do, too. It’s a fine line of confidence versus cocky but if you believe, and you can impress someone else to take a shot at, with you, you know, you’ll, you’ll shine. It’s just that, you know, getting in. Don’t be afraid to do what it takes to get in. See, I gave her my card, and she’s gonna call me.