Brian Rosen — Founder and Executive Director of SportsBusinessU
Indiana University, Bloomington, B.S. Marketing and Legal Studies, Expected 2014
Walking onto any university campus as freshmen, students get bombarded by classes to take and clubs to join. At that point, I found myself moving from a small school, with a graduating class of 114 in Santa Monica, California, to a university with 42,000 students in Bloomington, Indiana. Few experiences will feel like as much of a culture shock.
Will so many groups to becoming involved with it became clear that I would need to develop a plan. Throughout the course of my now three plus years of college I have begun to develop a personal mission statement to help guide me.
The Kelley School of Business, like many business schools, requires freshmen to take a career class. That class gave me the perfect avenue to begin developing my mission statement though one value exercise. Part of the class had students searching for poignant quotes to then reflect on. Understanding the industry I want to go into, it became clear that the quote I would choose needed to underscore gaining an extra edge.
Through research, I discovered a speech given by then Senator and Former President John F. Kennedy in September of 1960. This speech, given during his Presidential campaign, focused on the idea of purpose. While discussing the direction he wants to take the country he explains, “Efforts and courage are not enough without purpose and direction.” He continues his speech by laying out four purposeful points for the country.
We all have the same goal: become leaders in the sports industry. While we may understand the import of effort and drive, rarely do we think about why we do it. Before we thrust ourselves into such a hyper-competitive industry we should answer, without reservations, what our purposes and directions are.
For me, understanding my direction has led me to some of my most rewarding projects. A couple of summers back I began assembling a group of sports business and marketing club presidents. The group of us met every few weeks and, after a long process, we decided to form SportsBusinessU. For those unfamiliar, SportsBusinessU is a community that focuses on helping people start to build careers to thrive in the sports industry. We help people through our blog, forums, and are launching a case study, a mentorship program, and a classroom integration program.
One of the greatest outcomes from beginning to understand my purpose and direction goes back to the beginning of JFK’s quote, “effort and courage.” Considering an endgame allows you be more focused, blocking out that which is unimportant. This attention to a single goal not only increases performance on related tasks but can also free up more time. This gained time can then be used for new projects or improving in lackluster areas.
Further defining my direction has allowed me to gain not only leisure time but time to do research as well. While my coursework does not focus on it, I have begun to read the Sports Business Daily and participate in a Coursera course (which I highly recommend). Sure, a lot of the time freed up has gone to watching Diners Drive-Ins and Dives, but some has also gone to productive tasks. Now, as I continue to pinpoint my purpose, I enabled myself to continue adding value, adding knowledge, and creating new projects to further my passion of sports business.
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