Top Researching Firm Finds New Trend Impacting Hiring in World’s Top Companies

Athletes Go Pro is a staffing firm that is dedicated to introducing well-rounded athletes to desirable employers across a wide range of industries. From our screening process to final interview prep, our team strives to find ideal employment matches for our candidates in their career search and clients seeking talent.

Any great business at its core has specific characteristics that separate them from their competition. Maybe it is the innovative technology a company is able to produce. Possibly a logistical database that is far superior to the pack. Some companies do research and are able to sell their findings to help clients become profitable.

No matter what a company contributes their success to, there is something more important behind the scene. The individuals that make up the company from the ground-floor to the executive level are an important piece in any company’s success.

With the understanding that every company wants a high-caliber candidate to fill whatever open role they have, where does a company go to find that “perfect hire”?

Beth Marciniak, Vice President at Ernst & Young, has found a trend that has found to pay dividends. “We were looking for the wrong thing… You look at a resume, and we were looking for this internship, that internship – athletes don’t have those internships!”.

Having spent her collegiate days playing on the varsity basketball team at Purdue 41 years ago, Beth Marciniak realized that her company was missing out on a pool of perfect candidates.

Marciniak called for Ernst & Young to research C-level business women to find if there was a trend in the data that would allow the hiring of better candidates. The research found that an astounding 94% of C-level business women had a backround in sports, with over half of them playing at the collegiate level. The same held true to form with male C-level executives.

Despite the lack of internships and “industry experience”, athletes outperformed the average possible candidate. The conclusion drawn from the research is that due to playing sports at a high level, the more an athlete competes, the more they put themselves in stressful circumstances. Those stressful circumstances allow for the candidate to build what is called “grit”.

Grit is an adjective used to describe an individual that has the heart and moral fortitude to see an endeavor out to its end. No matter what the obstacle or road ahead, the person won’t quit until the job is done.

Jamie Spencer, an executive for the Minnesota Wild believes that the grit discovered through competition and obstacles in an athlete’s career sets a positive foundation for life. Spencer says, “If you think about it, everything you learn in a locker room is transferable as a dad, as a major component to work and everyday life”.

The most important skill seen by Spencer in athletes is the resiliency to bounce-back from a loss. Learning how to be a “graceful loser” is critical for an athlete to learn from their loss and use it as a stepping stone to grow and become successful in the future. The ability for a worker in any environment to be coachable by their bosses and peers is crucial for growth at whatever level in an organization.

When a company is in the position to hire new employees, it is an opportunity to grow and expand the business. It is the chance for a new member to be introduced to a new environment that they can thrive and develop their own skills while increasing the productivity and value of the company. Former athletes are candidates that often exceed expectations and use their competitive drive to help move a company forward.

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