Monday, September 8, 2008
When Work is Your Passion
My Red Stars co-worker Pat McNamara posted a great blog today about his life in soccer. i worked with Pat at the Chicago Fire and am very fortunate that he accepted the Red Stars Director of Corporate Partnerships position recently. He is one of the best sellers of the professional soccer experience i have ever known.
In his post, Pat talks about how soccer has engulfed his life. i strongly believe that hiring people like Pat is a critical part of being successful. i've always called it hiring talented, hardworking people with good character. Someone today referred to it as "I.C.E." - hiring intelligent, competent, energetic people.
In either case, it is the passion for the job that makes good employees great employees. Hiring people who know soccer and have a passion for the sport results in a better office environment and a more effective and harder working staff. Hard work and passion means nothing if they're not also talented and have good character though.
One of the real differences in pro soccer administration now compared to twenty years ago when i started in pro soccer is the depth of the front office talent pool. When i started with the Milwaukee Wave in 1987, there were only one or two sports administraion programs in the country, fewer than 100 experienced soccer executives and less than a million soccer players. Now there are hundreds of collegiate sports admin programs, thousands of experienced soccer executives and tens of millions of current or former soccer players. That all increases the pool of talented, hard working people with good character who are qualified to work in pro sports administration.
The Chicago Red Stars are the beneficiaries of that progress.