Put sports experience on your resume

Last Updated 17 January 2018, 20:19 IST

Nowadays, professionals are not only listing out activities that are directly related to their jobs but also sports and other activities that showcase their creativity, personality and enthusiasm. In particular, sportspeople tend to stand out for various qualities like leadership, and recruiters tend to keep a look out for them. As a sportsperson, you may stand out for some of the following qualities:

Accountable: You're accountable to yourself and your goals. You are equally good and dynamic as a team.

Managing skills: You can balance academics and sports, and you're used to managing your time.

Strong work ethics: You have a strong work ethic and are dedicated to your goals.

Adaptive: You're used to the public spotlight, and the pressure and scrutiny that come with it.

Leadership skills: You have good mentoring and leadership skills, especially as a team leader.

Hence, participation in various activities and sports that show your technical skills, community involvement or team playing capabilities may enhance your candidature for a college or company.

Skilled employees

The workplace favours athletes, so do your best to be one. Companies seek employees who can stand out in high pressure situations, demonstrate leadership and react positively to the instruction of superiors. Here are some reasons why athletes make the best hires:

They have grit: Working, especially for start-ups, is about putting in the hours towards a goal such as a quarterly sales number. True momentous victories in the office are rare. As a manager, you want people who aren't working for the 'win', but for the pure love of the effort.

They can prioritise: Athletes are goal-oriented by nature, which means they're constantly assessing where they stand in their relationship to their objective and fine-tune their tactics to reach where they need to reach. Like a midfielder in a football game, reading the defence line to decide whether to shoot or pass, the best workers constantly re-prioritise to focus on the goal that matter the most to their team.

They know what 'team' means: If you want a business with collaborative ethos, adding athletes to the mix is essential. Great teamwork is about subsuming individual egos and agendas under the goals of the group. Athletes understand that teamwork is about more than just sharing the workload, supporting your teammates or jumping in to lead when needed. Great teamwork requires people who understand group dynamics and know how to adjust their behaviour and role to fit the organisational needs.

In today's workplace, resumes with sports mentioned in it stand out because companies value emotional intelligence a lot over academic intelligence. Emotional intelligence is the 'soft skills' that enable smooth running of interpersonal relationships at work - such as the ability to read peoples' non-verbal cues and the ability to manage oneself within a team. This can be easily developed when one is a sportsperson. It is not just this that sportspeople develop - they get to learn skills such as time management, decision-making under pressure, focus and mental toughness.

It's smart to use extracurricular activities to your advantage by including information that will highlight the important skills you have learnt and applied. So, before you hit 'send' and email your resume to recruiters, make sure you have included your time spent on the court or playing field. And it is better to weave in the skills that sports has taught you and it will surely be noticed by a recruiter.

(The author is with Manav Rachna Educational Institutions, Faridabad)

(Published 17 January 2018, 12:10 IST)

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