5 skills to transition from athletics to work experience

Every decision that you make in life has pros and cons, being a student-athlete is no different. Student-athletes earn their advantages through their time, effort, and ability. Commitment to athletics can cause their resume to be lacking a sufficient amount of previous work experience because they may not have been able to put their time towards internships and other work opportunities that the typical student would have been able to utilize. This lack of true work experience can be detrimental to your job search. Thankfully, athletics has provided you with unique experiences that, if marketed properly, can give you an upper hand on the competition.

1. You can handle adversity

Every practice, lift, run, meeting or game that you have participated in has presented some level of adversity to you, use your experience to your advantage. Whether it be competing for playing time, finishing your last set, passing a conditioning test, coming back from injury, or battling back in the fourth quarter, you have experienced adversity and have overcome adversity countless times in your career. Describe your toughest experiences to show your employer that you can handle any challenge that comes your way.

2. You can collaborate

As an athlete, no matter the sport, you have worked with others to achieve a common goal. Employers need employees who have the ability to collaborate with their peers to create ideas and solve problems. As an athlete, you have mastered this skill. At some point you have had to sacrifice for the good of the team and communicate with them to make a crucial stop. Use your greatest team accomplishments as evidence that you can work with others to complete any task.

3. You can manage your time

As a student-athlete, your life is scheduled around your sport. You are required to attend practice, games, lifts, runs, meetings, media events, and community events and that is just to maintain your place on the team! On top of that you have to attend classes, study for tests, write research papers and give speeches to remain academically eligible. You have gone through the gauntlet of time management since the beginning of your career. Describe your experience to show your employers that you can maintain a schedule to be the most efficient with your time.

4. You are a competitor

The goal of your company is to profit as much as possible. How they accomplish that goal is through a multitude of ways, but when it comes down to it, their profit will be determined by how their product matches up to their competitors’ products. Every team that you have ever been a part of has had one goal, and that is to win. Your team’s ability to win is determined by how your team matches up with your competitors. You know what it takes, the amount of work needed to put in, and the amount of effort required to be the best. Show your employer that you have the work ethic to help the company meet its goals.

5. You are a leader

In your athletic career, you have been a leader in some form. You may not have been the vocal team captain or the best player on the team but you were a leader on and off the field. You might not see yourself as a leader but you had an impact on your teammates and classmates. Your leadership could have been shown in countless ways that you may not have even considered, but it was present. Look back on your career and you will find a time when you provided value to your team, it could have been anything from an emotional speech to showing an underclassman how to properly run a drill. No matter the scenario it is valuable and can benefit you in your job search.

Life after athletics can be tough, especially if you feel you are lacking in certain areas of legitimate work experience. The truth is, that you have more skills, resources, and abilities than you realize. Use your athletic experience to market yourself. Stay confident, stay true to yourself, and maintain your competitive fire. Stay prepared so that when your opportunity arises, you will be ready to take it and run with it.

About Game Plan

Game Plan’s comprehensive software platform integrates mobile-first eLearning as well as virtual mentorship and career services, uniquely designed for athletic organizations. Game Plan works with 875+ athletic departments and organizations with over 240,000 courses completed yearly. Our eLearning courses provide student-athletes ultimate access and flexibility while equipping both athletics departments and the conference office management tools and insight to ensure outstanding experiences and outcomes. To learn more about Game Plan, please visit wearegameplan.com.