Bring your sports mindset to work — Tour America Founder Mary McKenna
"When you’re running a business you’re being knocked from every side."
Business and sport have a lot in common. Tight time frames, teamwork, competition and targets to reach are just as big a part of one as they are the other.
The same ambition that drives the world's best sports players is very easily translated into business. Whether it's a physical challenge or something more psychological, you don't get to reach the top without the ability to pick yourself up from the bottom.
Speaking to host Sonya Lennon on the latest episode of The Architects of Business, in partnership with EY Entrepreneur of the Year, was Tour America Founder Mary McKenna. According to Mary, her time as a hockey player helped her bounce back from any setbacks that come her way.
"When you start a business or when you’re running a business you’re being knocked from every side, so it’s about the ability to say 'OK that’s happened. Now that was tough, get up,'" Mary said.
"All those things in sport really helped me."
Bringing your sporting attitude to work doesn't mean you have to start togging out in shorts and tacking your competitors. After learning the hard way how to deal with the harshness of sport and not getting picked, Mary was able to work on her own game and prove the doubters wrong.
"Maybe that’s where sport played a bit of a role. You know, you go and you play and you’re trying to get on a team. You’re trying to get on the first team and you’re working very hard and you’re not selected so life can be unfair and you say 'Oh I deserve this but I didn’t get on the team.'
"Now I was doing very well in hockey so I was earning it but it was literally consistently working at it. Losing a game, very disappointed, the team are there, how do we keep this going? So all those things in sport really helped me," she said.
Now at the helm of Ireland's top tour operator to the States (as well as the No. 1 seller of cruises worldwide with Cruise Holidays), we reckon her spot in any lineup is pretty much nailed on.