Home > Event, Job, networking, social networking, sport management > Recap of the Sport Management Lecture at Gillette Stadium

Recap of the Sport Management Lecture at Gillette Stadium

Yesterday, I attended the Sport Management and Entertainment Executive Lecture and Career Fair at Gillette Stadium. There were around 500 attendees and the lecture featured four different speakers: Brian Bilello, Jennifer Ferron, Stacey James, and Murray Kohl. I enjoyed the lecture as it was good to hear some stories about how different people in management positions arrived there. Nothing groundbreaking came up, but it was informative. They put a lot of emphasis on networking. At the lecture, I took a few notes on the back of my program about some of the interesting pointers they had.

An interesting thing that I noticed was the common theme about not necessarily starting in sports. Several of the speakers did not get their break in sports, as they started in other areas, such as communications, engineering, and economics. Many of them also did not get their big break by joining a professional or even semi-professional sports team. This is an important thing to understand for myself and other similar young sport management and sport business professionals. It is important to work your way up into the industry, as it is impractical to think you will start out earning lots of money at some big name organization like the New England Patriots.

A question was asked about interviewing for a potential job at a big time organization and whether or not they had any advice. The main thing was to put your feelings and emotions as a fan behind you when interviewing and working at a job. When an employee has strong feelings for an organization, and has trouble putting their “fan side” behind them, they often lose touch of their purpose at the organization. You are not joining the organization to get closer to it, you are there to work, further their business, and help the organization grow. People who are focused on being a fan, rather than being a valuable employee lose sight of their job, which severely detracts from their performance and ability to positively impact the organization. They need to focus on what their job entails, not the fact that it is your favorite team and favorite players.

The importance of networking could not have been stressed enough throughout the duration of the lecture (which lasted about an hour). A major point was the need to call people in different organizations, get an idea of their job, and build a rapport with them. By simply reaching out, asking questions, and putting yourself out there, you can create a very positive relationship with various people. It is important to talk to the right people, however, and ask the right questions. If you go up to a random person who works security for the Patriots, chances are they won’t be of much help to you. Talking to the head of human relations, however, would be a different story. Don’t just ask what openings they have for jobs. You need to get information about what their job is, why they like it, and how they got there. By calling and asking for advice, you get the attention of important people in whatever organization(s) you talk to. In getting their attention, although they may not have openings at the current time, they may be more likely to call you later when jobs do open up.  It is also good to ask for suggestions, as a potential in the field, about what you can do to break into the industry. That leads me to my next point.

A question was asked about what some tips are for getting your foot in the door (for a young professional attempting to enter the sport business field). The answer was, “Networking, luck, get out there, stand out in the crowd, be prepared and be different.” They went on to say it is important to join organizations, which is a great opportunity to meet people. Another important thing to do is volunteer your time. By doing this, you get your name out and gain valuable experience in the field. This is a great way to improve your resume (through volunteer experiences).

In interviewing, the most important thing is to prepare. Do your research on the organization. This is very important, as you need to know the organization in and out. If you are interviewing for a job with your favorite sports team, they don’t want to know the fact that they have won three Super Bowl Championships in the last 10 years, they want to know what you can do to improve their organization. They don’t want sports nuts, they want good employees who are valuable to the organization.

The lecture was fun and interesting. It was great to hear some opinions of professionals in the field that I am looking to enter. I hope this recap is of help to you.

Upcoming articles: Recap of the career fair, update on the colored resume question, and a recap of the Revolution game.

Dressed for the lecture and career fair

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  1. April 12, 2010 at 8:42 am

    Sport management is little bit neglected field But now some very good universities apply this course for study. Actually sport management can be a very good career option and though it is not known by many people you have very good chance to reach on top in this field.

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