Athletes and Startup have a lot in common on their path to success. These Athletes from the 2016 Rio Olympics have some interesting and inspiring lessons for the Startup companies to learn and follow.
Chierika Ukogu – Starting Up
Chierika “Coco” Ukogu is a 23-year-old Nigerian-American rower. She is a graduate of Stanford University, and a medical school hopeful who paused her dream for the Olympics. Chierika Ukogu crowdfunded her journey to participate in women’s single sculler for the 2016 Rio Olympics on behalf of her home nation Nigeria. She transcended into sculling from team rowing along with the challenge of color in a sport dominated by white people. Coco showed the spirit of Starting up for the rest of us.
Like Athletes, to Startup is one of the most challenging thing an entrepreneur can face. From implementing the idea, clearing permissions and approvals, rolling out the product among many others. The process of starting up requires a lot of passion and persistence.
Julius Yego – Adaptation
Julius Yego from Kenya is also known as the YouTube man, because he teaches himself to throw Javelin from the tutorials on the You Tube instead of a coach. Coming from a rural village, he used sharpened sticks he cut off trees to practice. He is now one of the three best javelin throwers ever. He finished Second in the men’s Javelin throw at 2016 Rio Olympics.
Often in startups, the entrepreneur has to adapt between many roles to face the oncoming challenges and reach the goals set out. Because of this he has to understand the business even if he is just the inventor or vice versa. One has to learn about many trades associated with the business and adapt to the changes to be successful.
Vanderlei Cordeiro de Lima – Determination
Brazilian marathon runner Vanderlei Cordeiro de Lima is chosen to ignite the cauldron at the opening ceremony for winning a bronze medal at the 2004 Athens Olympics despite being tackled by a protester. De Lima lost several seconds before a local in the crowd helped pull off him, but the damage was done. His shot at gold was lost but his determination made him finish the race third, with a smile, and celebrated his victory joyously. Vanderlei Cordeiro de Lima is being awarded the Pierre de Coubertin medal. An honor rarely bestowed in the Olympics for exceptional demonstration of fair play and Olympic values.
The path to success for athletes and Startup may not be a smooth ride. It takes a lot of determination to focus and achieve the goals set out. Further, factors you can control or not will arise, it is how strong a Startup stays determined matters more.
Joseph Schooling – Disrupt
Joseph Schooling, 21-year-old swimmer broke Michael Phelps’s Olympic record in the 100-meter butterfly event and brought Singapore its first-ever gold medal. The 23-time gold medallist Michael Phelps who managed to finish second in the event was his childhood hero. Joseph Schooling became a disruptor by not hesitating to challenge the champion swimmer and winning against him while also setting a new Olympic record.
Most Athletes and startups aim to disrupt the very game they are in. Even giant companies with a legacy are being surpassed by these disruptive innovations. The lack of market shares or the years of advantage does not restrict a Startup to dream big and achieve its goals.
Yusra Mardini – Endurance
Yusra Mardini, the Syrian swimmer fleeing civil war, swam with her sister for three and a half hours in the cold waters and pushed a sinking boat carrying 20 to safety. The inspirational teenager won the first heat in the women’s 100m butterfly representing the first-ever Refugee Olympic Team for the 2016 Rio Olympics.
Hardships and challenges is an integral part in the life cycle of both athletes and Startup. Most startups fail to survive past a year because they fail to create cash flow. Successful startups choose to be at least ramen profitable to endure challenges until the market becomes favorable to make big profits.
Oksana Chusovitina – Discipline
Uzbekistan’s Oksana Chusovitina is 41 years old gymnast competing in her seventh Olympics. She is the oldest woman gymnast ever to compete in the Olympic Games. The average age of an Olympic gymnast is less than 21. The disciplined athlete made it to top 10 ranks in 2016 Rio Olympics being a mother.
Running a Startup takes an immense amount of hard work and discipline. Action plan for startups also involve not so exciting things to do. Hence, the discipline of the entrepreneur adds strength to his or her Startup. Success of the startup in the long run is finally in the discipline of showing up on time and willing to be hands on.
Ryan Lochte – Innovation
Ryan Lochte is a US Swimmer who won the Gold in Men’s 4x200m freestyle relay at 2016 Rio Olympics. He is known for what is known as “Lochte Turn”. The innovation in the flip turn is giving him about a second advantage in his lap time. Watch the video to learn how the innovation has helped ryan lochte win 12 Olympic medals.
Innovation is an important element in running a Startup. The action of inventing or improvising on an idea, product or task with some new changes will always help the athletes and Startup alike. Thus, this innovation will give the added advantage compared to the rest of the competitors.
Simone Biles – Focus
Simone Biles is an American artistic gymnast won four gold medals and bronze in 2016 Rio Olympics. She had to home school to focus on her dream to be a gymnast. Simone also spends more time training for the sport rather than with her friends. To accomplish this medal tally she sacrificed going to parties and even to prom to stay focused on the game.
Successful athletes and Startup only focus on areas that help in reaching their goals. Be it prototyping, focusing on customer experience or any other, one has to remain focused. Startups must focus to maximize the result on the areas that bring in more success.
Dipa Karmakar – Run a Risk
She is an artistic gymnast who represented India at the 2016 Rio Olympics. Dipa Karmakar is the first Indian female gymnast ever to compete in the Olympics. She finished fourth by a small margin. The hardest move in gymnastics which is famously known as the death vault called Produnova was attempted by Dipa Karmakar. In the sports history only a handful of people have run a risk to attempt the jump . To win a medal she had to run a risk and give her full potential over the others.
Many often overlook running a business as a risk. Clearly for those in it, know a calculated risk will give them favourable returns which they had hoped for. The ability to calculate and take a well strategized risks will be of paramount importance for the growth of any Startup.
Every athletes and Startup will be presented with opportunities where they have to display many of the above qualities if not all at various time to be successful. These are the 9 Inspirational Athletes and Startup Lessons from them in 2016 Rio Olympics.