Be More Than a Fan – Four Reasons to Have Hobbies Outside of Work
13 December, 2018

Be More Than a Fan – Four Reasons to Have Hobbies Outside of Work

/ 5 years ago

Be More Than a Fan – Four Reasons to Have Hobbies Outside of Work

Jake Lenz, President & Co-Founder, HomeField Alliance

Sports and entertainment can be one of the toughest industries to break into, regardless of the depth of your network, pursuing advanced degrees or even just having a passion for the job. Getting into one of these jobs can take dozens of applications, interviews and rejection letters before getting an offer. Once you’re in though, there’s a certain feeling that you’ve crossed over a “career threshold” – one that most people don’t want to give up.

At the same time, once you’re working in the industry, you spend a lot of time doing just that – working. Late nights, weekends and the ups and downs of a season often wear down even the most passionate sports fan at some point. Without external passions to turn to, it can be tough to escape the stresses of the job, even when you leave the office and head home.

Beyond avoiding burnout, we’ve shared three additional reasons below why being more than a sports fan can give you a big leg up on your peers.

Avoid Burnout

We’ve all “hit the wall” at one point or another and its more than likely it will happen again. It’s not always work that’s the cause; it could be one of many other responsibilities, even something as simple as the stress of running errands after work.

By having hobbies outside of work, you divert where your emotional energy is spent and stop the stress cycle from continuing. Some choose to unwind by going for a run, others by pursuing a hobby like music or painting, while for others the diversion could be their separate side hustle. Regardless of what it is, find a way to challenge yourself outside the office to decrease stress and ensure you’re creating a life beyond your job.

Show That You Can Perform the Job

Conventional wisdom in the sports business is never mention in the interview that you’re a fan of the team or organization where you’re interviewing. It’s said that making that comment alone can end an interview at some organizations.

If you have interests and discussion topics that extend beyond where you’re interviewing, it shows that you’re there to interview for the job and not just as a fan. With most teams not hurting for fans and still able to sell more tickets, your fandom isn’t important to them compared to your ability to perform a job and provide value back to the organization.

Be More Well Rounded Professionally

This one can be as simple as going to the gym or volunteering with a local community organization. Regular exercise can make you more productive at work and increase your energy throughout the day. Volunteering or board service for a non-profit can provide you with the connections to help close a key sponsorship deal or make an important connection within the market. Find a new song through your passion for music that would be perfect for in-game? Maybe share it with the Game Operations team member who is creating a new playlist.

When you find new hobbies outside of the office, you bring additional value back into your career and your organization as a result. It might not be immediately obvious, but the effort you put in outside of the office can have a direct impact in the office during the work day.

Be More Well Rounded Personally

Finally, having hobbies outside of the office can simply make you a more well-rounded individual. At one point in our career, a lot of us just worked – I certainly did at one point and it affected both my personal and work relationships. I was focused entirely on my job and it felt like it was the only thing that deserved my time.

By joining LGBTQ+ flag football and tennis leagues, I have been able to take my passion for and interest in sports and apply them to my local LGBTQ+ community. I ended up making a bunch of new friends, joining the board of one of the leagues, and finding a new community within my city that I wouldn’t have otherwise. Some of those friends have turned into travel companions and others into professional connections.

While it may seem simple at face value, having passions outside of work isn’t something that tends to be prioritized in our industry. By finding the integration between our professional and personal lives and making adequate time for each, we’re able to ensure that we have a healthy interaction with both.


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