Saturday, September 23, 2023

Best Practices When Hiring Former Student Athletes

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Shreya Christina
Shreya has been with for 3 years, writing copy for client websites, blog posts, EDMs and other mediums to engage readers and encourage action. By collaborating with clients, our SEO manager and the wider team, Shreya seeks to understand an audience before creating memorable, persuasive copy.

Christopher Vidal, CEO, ASM Sports Group

The average cost of the 2021 to 2022 school year at a public university in the state was $10,338, according to American news† For out-of-state public institutions, that price climbed to $22,698. The cost of attending private universities exceeded $38,000. For many students, the cost of going to university is a significant barrier come in. This is why scholarships, such as athletic scholarships, can be especially helpful. Enter the student athlete.

As the CEO of a growing athletic scholarship agency, I’ve noticed that student athletes are often disciplined, driven, competitive, loyal, and hardworking. Many of these young adults have been exercising for most of their lives and live by strict schedules and daily routines. Student athletes are also often coachable and embody self-determination to earn the limited scholarship dollars available.

Student athletes who drop out of college and don’t enter the professional sports world can be a great addition to a company’s team. They are the type of employees who can help make your dream grow. The skills gained during collegiate sports can easily be transferred to the workplace with just a little shaping. In my experience, many former student-athletes exude teamwork, communication and leadership. What could be better than that? Many are also self-starters. This can be an important asset to your team.

But of course you can’t just post on LinkedIn, “Only hire student athletes.” So, how is anyone going to do this? Posting your open position on job boards for former college athletes can help you in your search. For example, the NCAA has a job market where employers can list open positions. I have also seen numerous networking groups on Facebook and other social media platforms that specifically reach out to former collegiate athletes.

That said, it’s still important to make sure the former athlete is a good fit for your organization. To assess their skills and determine if they are the right addition to your team, you need to ask the right interview questions. A few of these are:

• “Do you prefer to work independently or in a team?” This can let you know what kind of employee they will be. Do they need to be micro-managed, or can you give them a task and let them do it?

• “What qualities do you think make a good leader?” This answer makes clear what is important to them and what their work ethic is. For example, is it important to them that you give them words of encouragement?

• “Under what kind of leadership do you perform best?” This speaks volumes about their personality. Evaluate whether their answer is the kind of personality you want to add to your team.

• “Can you describe a time when you had a disagreement with a teammate? How did you solve the problem?” This answer shows their ability to solve problems.

• “What did you find most difficult in your sports or team situation?” They will answer quickly if they can handle the working environment of your company.

Finally, you will find that while they are often driven go-getters, some former student-athletes seek organization and discipline. In my experience, these are people who follow strict schedules, especially if they started their sport at a very young age. Many have always replied to trainers, coaches, study advisors and of course to themselves. While they can be their own harshest critic, this group of people can be your most loyal, hard-working group. Take your chance, try something different and consider hiring a former student athlete. Business Council is the leading growth and networking organization for entrepreneurs and leaders. Am I eligible?

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