Make Sports Useful in Business: Confidence Boost

Posted on: August 4th, 2018 by Jen Mueller

No one likes a know-it-all.

So why are you putting so much pressure on yourself to become one?

What’s holding you back when you stop speaking up in a meeting, introducing yourself to an influencer, or adding something to a conversation?

Is it because you don’t know what to say… or that you don’t know what to say, next?

When people ask me about the interviews I do with athletes during pre-game or post-game shows, I often tell them I know how the interview starts but I never know how it’s going to finish. I know what questions I’m going to ask, but I don’t know how they’ll be answered. Here’s what I’ve learned after 20 years working in sports broadcasting, you don’t need all the answers. You just need to start the conversation. You’ll figure it out as you go.

The same is true in business conversations. Stop trying to be the know-it-all, or waiting until you’re in a more senior position, or waiting until someone asks you.

Take the initiative. Start the conversation and let the people around you benefit from the expertise and ideas you have to offer.

If you’re not sure where to start, take a page from my book (literally) and use sports conversations as a starting point. Sports small talk is a low leverage opportunity to practice the skills you need in bigger business settings. Every week I publish weekly sports Convo Starters to make it easier. Sign up here!