How To Leverage Your Athletic Experience During A Job Interview

How To Leverage Your Athletic Experience During A Job Interview
Embarking on a job search after graduating from college can be stressful and frustrating. It often seems like employers want to hire people with experience, but as a new grad, you lack that experience. However, as an athlete, you do have skills and experience that many of your competitors do not have.

College athletics has trained you to perform well in the working world, so it’s important to articulate those transferable skills during a job interview. Here are some tips on how to showcase your strength as an athlete into strengths as a job candidate:

Showcase Time Management

Juggling an athletic schedule and a full course load would have been impossible if you were not an exceptional time manager. This is a skill that directly translates into success in the working world. Talk about the ways you set priorities for your day and your week, especially during your sports seasons.

Highlight Team Experience

No one understands the concept of teamwork like an athlete. You’ve learned that everyone must work together and play their role to succeed. You understand that if someone is struggling or must sit out a game, that everyone must work even harder to get the job done. You also know that someone else’s strengths make up for another person’s weaknesses. During interviews, talk about the successes you’ve had working together because no one works in a bubble and employers look for candidates who understand how to function well in a team setting.

Talk About Accepting Feedback

As a lifelong athlete, you are used to getting feedback from your coaches and from seasoned veterans. You’ve taken that feedback and used it to improve rather than taking it personally. Coachability is an important trait and hiring managers want to work with people who are trainable and coachable and who are always striving to improve and grow professionally.

Discuss Your Resilience

Top athletes have mental toughness. You know that you can’t let a mistake on the field, a setback from an official or a game loss drag you down. Resilience is important in the working world because setbacks and challenges occur every day. During interviews, talk about the ways you handle adversity on the field and the steps you take to quickly regroup, refocus and improve.

Feature Failing Forward

Many candidates are afraid to admit that they have failed at things in the past, but everyone has failed at something and as a lifelong athlete, you’ve experienced your share. You’ve also learned how to deconstruct a loss or failure and develop a game plan to prevent mistakes and failures from happening again. This is an extremely valuable skill in the corporate realm, so make sure to highlight it in every interview. Talk about the ways you have failed forward to create better outcomes.

Are You A College Athlete Looking To Start Your Career?

Athlete Career Placement works with degree-holding college athletes to help them kick off their careers in business. If you are ready to launch your career with a great job at a top company, submit your resume to ACP today.