Money Smart Athlete Blog

The Role of Mentorship in Athletic Entrepreneurship

Nov 1, 2023 | Athlete Entrepreneurship

By Vasilia Polycarpou, Contributor   

Even though there is no doubt that athletes possess a wide range of unique skills and traits that could prove to be valuable in an entrepreneurial career, such as discipline, perseverance and the continuous need to improve, the transition into the world of business does not come without obstacles and challenges. Mentorship can be the link between the field of sports and the field of business.

This notion can be supported through the example of NBA legend LeBron James, who has openly spoken about receiving mentorship and guidance from Warren Buffet; leading to the successful launch of his own production company, as well as a number of investments in a wide range of businesses.

Athletes may be equipped with the tools to navigate a business environment; however, they will certainly need help on how to apply them, due to their lack of experience. Experienced mentors can share their knowledge and know-how with athletes, helping them with analyzing the markets they are interested in, making wise strategic decisions, as well as planning their financials efficiently.

Furthermore, mentors can provide athletes with extensive networking opportunities due to their numerous business contacts, which can help them meet important people in their field of interest, securing business deals and partnerships.

Additionally, an experienced mentor can help minimize risk, through the identification of potential pitfalls, fraudulent investment schemes and avoidance of poor financial decisions. Even if athletes find themselves in an unfortunate financial situation, mentors can provide the necessary guidance to help them turn things around, transforming a challenge into a growth opportunity.

Finally, and most importantly, a mentor with whom you have good communication will be there to provide you with emotional support throughout your entrepreneurial endeavors. The transition into entrepreneurship can be emotionally challenging, due to the uncertainty of entering a new field, causing stress and anxiety to athletes who are taking the plunge and want to try something new. However, having the support of a great mentor can provide them with the reassurance, confidence and encouragement they need to succeed.

All in all, we can conclude that mentorship is a necessity for athletes wanting to enter the business world, since mentors can inspire, support and guide them with navigating challenges not only in terms of knowledge, but also in terms of creating opportunities, mitigating risk as well as overcoming emotional obstacles.

The Money Smart Athlete® Blog is established and run by the Sports Financial Literacy Academy® (SFLA). Through its education programs, the SFLA has the vision to financially educate and empower athletes of all ages to become better people, not just better athletes.  For more information on our courses, our SFLA Approved Trainer Program®, and how they can benefit you and your clients, please get in touch with us at [email protected].