The 2022 FIFA World Cup commenced this November and brought to us quite a few spectacular moments with powerful wins. The beauty of football lies in the present, it takes unexpected turns and cannot be simply derived from statistics. On-spot decisions map out the next few minutes, but it isn’t long before another player changes the course of the game again. Doesn’t this sound familiar? This is exactly how every business operates.

Football is a great game, but it also is a handy guidebook to running a business. Let us look at some of the world’s greatest footballers and learn to tackle a business like they dribble!

  1. “ Get Crystal Clear on your Priorities “ – Neymar Jr.

Neymar Jr. drew inspiration from his father who was a footballer himself. From his childhood, he outshone everyone in the game with his fast paced and fluid dribbling skills. His versatility makes him play as a left-wing attacker and a right wing striker too. Neymar’s life had been a struggle from the moment it began, characterised by hardships and poverty. This Brazilian star was persistent with football. He started by combining futsal with street football and at the age of 14, he already had gained fame enough to give out autographs. From rags to riches, Neymar pulled his family out of poverty with his focus and consistency to become big! From him, we learn a lot about setting audacious goals and working hard towards them. Think about what you want to accomplish and make sure they are worth your time and effort by using a SWOT analysis. Go into the micro details of those goals and define them at each step to make them crystal clear. Roadmap your revenues and expenses to help you financially aid the targets. Committing is extremely important, and it requires your entire team’s resilience. Lastly, keep track of progress and brainstorm ideas with your team to enhance performance. Reward yourself and your little elves for these little milestones! Incentives bear motivation.

  1. “Consistency is the Key” – Lionel Messi

“It took me 17 years and 114 days to become an overnight success.” said Lionel Messi, the Argentine-born footballer. Messi started playing football in 1995, and at just thirteen, he relocated to Barcelona to play for their under-14 team. He climbed the ladder quickly and appeared for his first friendly for FCB at the age of 17. He was shorter than boys of his age because he suffered from a growth-hormone deficiency, but his love for football compensated for it. There were times he would just want to go back home, but he never abandoned his place on the field. Messi ended up taking FC Barcelona to the leagues and not only won them, but also led Argentina to victory and won the Golden Ball award for it. His persistence and devotion brought him his success and that is something any businessperson should learn from him. Entrepreneurial success says that you need to get up and show up for your duties anyway. There may be a thousand problems shooting your way; using your team’s inputs, making small adjustments, and readjusting continuously to shifting situations is what persistence is, and what keeps you on the top.

  1. “Trust your Instincts and Go for it! “ – Diego Maradona

Maradona showed early signs of greatness at the age of 8. He started off in Argentinos Juniors and by 15, he was playing for friendlies against Hungary. He proceeded to FC Barcelona and became the first player to get a standing ovation from the Real Madrid fans. El Diego was always sure of what he wanted. Being 5’ 5” gave him a spotlight, he was the smallest player on field. However, he did not let this break him. Even with this short stature, he tackled the ball better than most on pitch and went around opponents, scoring goals. He didn’t believe in wallowing, but preached to have confidence in the self and take on the world. Just like Diego, entrepreneurs can harness the power of their instinct. When you know you are good at something, go for it. Take lessons from your past experiences to understand what fits your business and what does not. Drawing on your subconscious means you are forecasting solely based on data, but looking at the bigger picture too. You know what is best for your business. The result of following your gut saves a lot of emotional and financial turmoil later in the business.

  1. “Stay One Step Ahead of your Competitors “ – Cristiano Ronaldo

The winner of 5 Ballon d’Ors and a winner of 32 trophies throughout his football career, was a son to a cook and a gardener. With this father’s support, CR7 started with Andorinha and then went to the Nacional only as a 12 year old. He would train different than the others, he would stay back after practice and work on his difficulties. He encouraged his teammates and corrected their mistakes too. In 2011, he received his first victory as part of Real Madrid. He is the first footballer to win the UEFA Champions league five times. Cristiano likes to train to be better than his opponents. He studies the way his rivals will play and tries to shoot goals from each direction. When you are in an open market, people learn to adapt to your skills and overthrow you, and hence, Cristiano never stopped trying to learn more skills. But of course, his step-overs and dribbling will never be matched! In the business world, you should know who your competitors are and what are their strengths. This will give you areas you need to incorporate or build up in your own venture and also give you an idea about the rival’s weaknesses.  You can then improvise your marketing strategies or conduct surveys to fill in their gap. You can also differentiate your services or products and get a unique position in the market.

Sustaining on the field for the whole 90 minutes is similar to sustaining the market ups and downs. We hope this article helped you gain some tips and perspective for sustenance.

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