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Hire Leaders, Not Managers

With enough experience, anyone can delegate tasks and “supervise” a team.  The primary goal of a team managers and supervisor is to delegate tasks and get things done. With this narrow view of a managers role, leadership and team morale have experienced a drastic decline. Organizations of all sizes have begun to set a trend of hiring managers who aspire only to delegate tasks and check items off a never-ending to-do list. However, my concern stems from the reality that a new crop of managers are simply task-delegators, not leaders.

image (1) Exceptional leaders have people under their supervision who not only work well under their guidance in their designated role, but excel is branching out into other areas. Great leaders inspire people who WANT to work for them. People WANT to be part of their team.

Managers who are not leaders often stem from hiring with short-term goals in mind. Mangers that are hired as a short-term fix simply fill a roll and don’t make the company better or more stable in the long run. Instead of taking the time to teach and develop their team, short-term managers tend to take on all or most of the work them and in turn start working overtime, causing frustration and resentment to appear in the work environment. Not a great way to build up your team or instill confidence and trust in your environment.

In the modern workplace, a cultural shift has occurred. Employees want to feel like they’re making a difference at work. Workers want more than just a job, where they punch-in and out mindlessly. People become extremely motivated when they feel that their employers have made an investment in not only them, but their success as well. Once people become invested, the sky is the limit for the things they can offer you.

How do you determine a leader from a manager?

Teamwork. A great leader was once a great follower. People who excel in team tasks not only know how to use their skills to advance a team, but can also work well with several different attitudes and points of view.

“Done Is Better Than Perfect”.

I recently ran across this phrase while reading Lean In by Sheryl Sandberg. The more I invest in learning about entrepreneurship and leadership, the more this quote hits close to home. Those who believe in this motto have the Big Picture in mind. Nothing will ever be perfect. A great idea can never be appreciated if it never gets put on paper and out into the world. Find managers who believe in this motto because they understand that the Big Picture is always the ultimate goal and they won’t hesitate to pull the trigger when a decision needs to be made. And we all know indecision can kill a good brand.

Leadership is a skill, which means it can be learned. Take the time to invest in your staff and their success. At the end of the day, an investment in your team is an investment in your organizations long-term success.

Sports Summit: A New Approach to Networking in Sports

Let’s take a short trip down memory lane. Think back to the last conference or job fair you attended. Don’t just think about the people you met. Think about what you wore, the lines you stood in and the food you ate.

job fair cartoonIf you’re anything like me, chances are you just thought about how uncomfortable your outfit was, the time you waited in a long line to spend five hurried minutes speaking with a sports professional and the considerable lack of food for the 100+ attendees.

Chances are, this is what every conference or job fair you’ve ever attended was like. As aspiring sports business professionals, we’ve grown accustomed to overcrowded job fairs and speed-dating style interviews. We’ve all done the mad dash to the booth of the most prominent team after the welcome address to get first impression points. I’ve always wondered why 99.9% of sports business conferences and job fairs are held in university lectures halls and conference center ballrooms. My assumption, it’s the easiest, most efficient way to mix and mingle 100+ recent grads and undergraduates with current sports professionals.

Easy and efficient may be ideal for job fillers and conference speakers, but what about the job seekers and conference attendees? Now, think outside the box with me for a moment. Think outside of the crowded auditoriums, long lines and rushed meetings. What if there were a way for job fairs to be more relaxed? For conferences to be more about sharing ideas and networking than shaking hands and handing out business cards?

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Left-right: Summit’s Jeremy Schwartz, Jeff Rosenthal, Elliott Bisnow and Brett Leve

A little over a year ago, I was introduced to Summit Series, a now 7-year old startup company founded by five young entrepreneurs. Elliot Bisnow, Brett Leve, Jeff Rosenthal, Jeremy Schwartz and Ryan Begelman began gaining notoriety for hosting annual, weekend-long conferences in exotic locations. In 2011, Summit took over a cruise ship headed for the Bahamas and in 2012 invaded Squaw Valley, California. The 2010 Summit Series featured an appearance by former President, Bill Clinton and the Summit at Sea weekend featured nightly performances by The Roots.

When I first heard of the series in the October 2013 issue of Wired Magazine, Summit had just purchased Powder Mountain to serve as its company’s headquarters. Like most conferences, Summit’s events take place over an entire weekend to give those hoping to network ample time to mingle. The key difference that separates Summit Series from every other conference, attendees are looking for more than just jobs, they are looking to create a culture of innovation and to share ideas.

I’m not naive, I realize that you need more than an idea to make a living. Ideas don’t pay the rent or buy food. People need jobs, I know. Just keep thinking outside the box with me for a moment longer.What if something like Summit Series were to pop-up for sports business professionals? Granted, it would certainly cost more than the standard $30 student rate, but then again, none of those conferences or job fairs included an appearance by Bill Clinton or nightly performances by The Roots.

Standing in long lines and following around conference speakers with your resume and business card in hand is not fun. I always doubted that I stood out from the other 20 people in line behind me. Yes, I have attended a job fair with the hopes of landing a job shortly thereafter. However, I’ve recently caught myself looking for conferences and happy hours just to interact with like-minded individuals. However, the million dollar question here is, do other people do the same? Would current sports business professionals be interested in attending a sports summit? Would YOU be interested in attending a sports summit?

At this point, I merely would like to create a discussion on the topic. A discussion on the possibility of creating a new approach to the way we do conferences , job fairs and networking.If you’d like to continue this discussion or tell me how completely ridicules I’m being, feel free to email me at rookierundown@gmail.com. 

-Rookie Specialist

Is This What They Call a Quarter Life Crisis?

A couple of weeks ago, I wrote an article in frustration when my job search wasn’t going the way I had planned. I’m sorry if this is more of a rant, than an intellectual article. I just figured that at least one other person feels the way I do. As always, feel free to comment, agree, disagree, etc.

Is This What They Call a Quarter Life Crisis?

Before I became a 20-something, I used to think a quarter life crisis was for people who lacked direction, for people who didn’t know what they wanted to do with their lives after college. But now, I know from firsthand experience that 20-somethings are having a quarter life crisis because we know what we want, it’s just no one’s willing to give it to us.

Universities should start offering classes like: Rejection Letters 101, The Art of Rejection and What Happens Next. But of course, that would be a bit pessimistic. But, reality is….life after college isn’t all rainbows and kittens. From day one of orientation, we’re told that you are at the “best” university, no matter what university you went to. I hail from THE University of Texas, where there is no shortage of school pride. So, I get it. They taught us how to weigh our options, to decipher between multiple job offers. But no one ever told us what to do when you have no options, when there are no offers to decipher between. Business professionals were so warm and gracious to talk to you, when you’re a student. But, once you’re past that stage you become lumped in with the other individuals begging for a job.

I followed the steps. I did everything right. I had multiple internships, dating back to my sophomore year. In life, you’re taught that if you followed the steps and stayed on the path, good things will happen and you will be rewarded at the finish line. However, someone forgot to mention that in life, there is no finish line. We should never be content with the life that we have. More importantly everything you want in life will not come to fruition in one epic moment. Life is a marathon, not a race.  Disappointment is inevitable. We all magically assumed that if we followed the steps, only one outcome was possible, we’d get the job. What other option could there be, right?

WRONG. Those participating in the never ending cycle of job searching know what I mean. There are just too few jobs, for too many applicants. Every academic advisor has done their best to try and predict what HR managers want and think. But you’ll never be able to go on enough interviews to determine what they think. They are human beings and complex creatures.

So what do we do now? Things happen, the past is the past and the only thing we can do is move forward. The best piece of advice I can give anyone, is to never give up on yourself. Have faith in you. Your intelligence and talents are in no way diminished because you can’t find a job.  I’ve gotten many rejection letters in my life and each one hurts more than the last. But remember, life is a marathon, our time will come.

About Rookie Rundown


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RookieRundown.com is a blog for the inner-rookie in all of us. Here you’ll find a new perspective on everyday life, through a rookie’s point-of-view. We’ll discuss everything from sports, travel and work to cheesy sitcoms and nerdy movies.

I don’t aim to prove that I’m right, I merely wish to start a discussion. Feel free to like, comment and share till your hearts are content.

So take a seat, grab some coffee and enjoy this ride with me. I promise to avoid potholes and ditches along the way.

-Rookie Specialist

 

About The Rookie

My name is Jennifer Chang, I was born and raised in Houston, Texas. After a brief four years at The University of Texas at Austin, I managed to maneuver my way into a variety of sports marketing jobs and internships (mostly internships, hints the rookie feeling). After a quarter century of life, I’ve decided to look at life from a different point-of-view. Instead of living to work, I’ve decided to work in order to live.

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Fun Facts:

  • I’am NOT a Dallas Cowboys fan
  • I’ve eaten lunch with Frank Deford
  • I hope to start my own business some day
  • I’ve held an actual conversation with Craig Biggio and Chandler Parsons
  • I lived on an island once (Hilton Head Island, South Carolina)
  • I’ve had the opportunity to play baseball at Minute Maid Park & play basketball at Toyota Center
  • I’ve never traveled outside of the United States
  • I once worked as a Production Assistant for CBS Sports during National Signing Day

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