by Kelli Matthews on July 24, 2012
With the opening ceremonies of the 2012 Summer Olympics, fans all over the globe will be glued to the TV watching sports we rarely see televised (fencing, anyone?) and cheering on athletes we’ve barely heard of (except for the men’s basketball team, maybe).
In the broadest sense, Olympic athletes are small business owners. An athlete is their own product and their business is to be the best in the world. They must also manage their schedule, build relationships with sponsors and teammates and be part of a community.
Is this any different than an entrepreneur working every day to make their startup or small business a success? What are some lessons that entrepreneurs can learn from Olympic athletes? I gave it some thought and came up with three things that stand out as lessons entrepreneurs could learn from Olympians.
1. Keep setting new goals.
An athlete doesn’t consider a personal record (or PR) a static point in time. Every time he or she achieves a PR, a new one is immediately set. As an entrepreneur, success comes from stretching just a little farther than you think is possible. When you achieve one goal, immediately set another. Having that clarity about the desired outcome keeps you focused when everything else can feel like it’s in flux.