By: Adam White, @FOSAdam
With graduation upon us and the real world looming, the sports industry is about to be flooded with internship and job seekers from across the country. When beginning your career, finding your first full-time internship or job after graduation is usually the hardest part, especially in sports. Luckily for you, breaking into the industry in 2016, while daunting is also exciting. You are entering into this industry in one of the greatest times, a time where technical advancements and companies pushing the boundaries of excellence have put the industry on the cutting edge. College may have ended, friends may have split up and careers may have begun, but before you take that next step, take a moment to see what you should be prepared for and how you can find success as you turn in that cap and gown for a suit and tie or a dress and heels.
Learning is Important
One of the common themes throughout the thread was that continuing to learn, no matter where your career takes you, is one of the most important ways to find success in the sports industry. With an industry that is ever changing, being able to stay up on everything that is going on around you not only allows you to stay ahead of others, but to use that knowledge and apply it to your current role.
You Can't Network Enough
In sports, if you aren't networking with professionals in your area or the students in your classes you will fall behind the thousands of others you are competing with for a role in the industry. Sports is a people business and it never hurts to have as many strong relationships as you can, but don't just take it from me.
Hard Work is Pivotal
The sports industry is unforgiving and one of the biggest differentiators is the ability to put your head down and grind out the long days, hours of work on the weekends and irregular schedules. Are you willing to do that? If not, you might have something else coming for you.
You are at an age where you don't have to box yourself in. Go against the grain, follow what you are passionate about and be open to trying a variety of different roles. You are at a time in your life where you can focus on your career and your goals, so why not do it. It may take you to foreign cities, it may take you away from your friends, but a true willingness to be open to whatever this industry has to offer will pay dividends along the way.
Nothing Will Be Given to You
Did you get that curve in college that bumped you from a B+ to an A? Did you get a reprieve from your professor for coming in late to class because, "There was traffic."? Those may be nice and all, but don't expect that to happen once you get into the professional world. If you do B+ work, you're going to be told that you work isn't good enough and that you need to do better. If you are late to work, your boss won't just say "Oh it is okay, don't worry about it." In the sports business industry putting together A work is expected, as is being on time, no matter the circumstances.
Most of All, Enjoy It
Although working in sports is tough, filled with long days and nights, and will have you working holidays and weekends, in the end it will be worth it. For many of you this will be your first position in sports, for others it may be your 12th, but no matter what, remember that your career wont always be the most linear...
and that it is okay, because it is good to...
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