Triathlon has traditionally been many things. It has been a fantastic demonstration of endurance sport. It has been an outlet for people to express
competitive drive. It has been a way for people to set and achieve goals.
Training for triathlon regularly helps you deal with the stress of running a company, increases creativity and leads to better business performance. Triathlon plays a key role as an outlet in the day-to-day management of many companies. For managers, the motivation to train, or compete in a triathlon at whatever level is a substantial aid when running a business. Being continually exposed to the idea of "you get out, what you put in" is an invaluable lesson for all. Triathlon also provides a wonderful opportunity to gain perspective. One of my main motivations of successful managers is to sail boils down to not wanting to take the well-trodden path, instead looking for a more inspirational route and a sense of adventure. For a just few hours a day you can be completely and utterly absorbed in a single physical and mental activity which is as far removed from work as possible.
From the calm serenity of being on the water to the intensity of the cycling, triathlon allows individuals to step away from the rat race, an escape that should not be taken for granted in our always-connected world.
The release triathlon provides is vital – keeping us fresh, both physically and mentally. There’s a correlation between running a business and keeping fit – each requires stamina, training and innovation; it’s just a different set of muscles. Triathlon has the ability to instil confidence in an individual, a huge benefit when faced with many of the challenges a business can offer. Participation of competitive managers in triathlon has played a massive part in their capability to launch and run a successful, high-stress business. The familiarity of hard graft, discipline and tenacity honed in a endurance environment are all key ingredients in forming the belief that when you put the hours in, success will follow.
A debate I sometimes find myself engaged in is that very few people can be both good at sports and creative. Nonsense; for me, everyone has the ability to be both, but like anything in life some people just have to try a little harder at one or the other. Sport breeds creativity, no one has ever had a good idea by locking themselves in a room and staring at a wall, whereas sport often demands creativity to beat an opponent, or your personal best.
I encourage everyone I know from business world, from junior execs, right up to the titans of industry, to try triathlon; the benefits are there to be seen. And as much as I understand how many business people love a beer after work, finding common ground with a client while training for triathlon, is a great way to cement relationships. Plus, you have then well and truly earned your beers afterwards.
There are several reasons why companies should enter teams and members in triathlon events in order to improve workplace productivity. These include:
- Team work / Camaderie - Training together/hurting together can bring your employees closer. Training and competing in triathlon race as part of a team is also great for leadership, self-esteem, confidence and positive workplace communication.
- Happier employees: Exercise has been proven to improve mood, promote better sleep patterns and de-stress the mind, which can only be a good result for employers.
- Respect: Earn new-found respect for your workmates and your boss by sharing blood, sweat and tears in training and on race day. This will translate in the office to a more harmonious workplace environment.