Sports is slowly recovering from the pandemic and we have had multiple announcements in June about major European football leagues set to resume. The news has created a furore among sports fans and fantasy sports users. If you are still unfamiliar with fantasy sports, it is a skill-based game which puts you in the seat of a sports manager/team selector. You have to strategically choose a team of the best players playing in a particular match and compete with other users’ teams. Usually the winner (the person whose team performs the best) is rewarded with a cash prize. Fantasy sports have become so popular that it has become common to hear a hot fantasy sports debate over a cup of coffee in the office canteen, especially after a weekend full of exciting matches.
But Fantasy sports isn’t just about the Monday morning bragging in front of your friends. It can actually provide you valuable lessons that are applicable at your workplace. After all, all the sports that have a fantasy sports version are team sports. Here are a few parallels you can draw from fantasy sports that may help you in leading your team at work.
- Selecting the Best Team: While selecting a fantasy team, you have all the players at your disposal but you choose the players that best suit your needs to achieve your goal. Even at your workplace, you will be faced with similar choices about your team selection. Your job is to choose the best people who can be coached and who are able to follow your strategy to achieve success.
- Collaboration: You must have heard the popular saying “There is no I in the team.” This is true when you manage your fantasy sports team as well as when you are managing your workplace team. Just like how each player of your fantasy team brings their own unique skills but the points you earn in each match are a sum total of their cumulative effort, in real life your team’s output is not how much individual effort your teammates put in but the sum total of their cumulative effort.
- Know When to Rethink Your Strategy: Henry Ford once said, “The only real mistake is the one from which we learn nothing.” How many times has it happened when you have shown great trust in a player but they failed to deliver for your fantasy team. Did that make you quit fantasy sports for good? No, right? You strategized again, put in more research and built a better team for the next match. Similarly, you may find yourself failing sometimes at your workplace. You may not have achieved your targets or you may have lost a client. You will get disheartened but the important thing is to learn from your mistake and be better prepared for your next opportunity.
- Always Strive for Improvement: Do you know what the best fantasy sports players have in common? They are always trying to learn newer ways to improve their selection or predict their opponents’ strategy. They keep discussing among themselves game strategies, form of the players they want to pick, their performance against certain teams, etc. In short, successful fantasy sports players are the ones who never stop striving for improvement. The same rule applies to leadership at your workplace. Strong leaders create strategies based on research, know their competitor’s weaknesses, listen intuitively to the advice of their colleagues and never stop learning.
- Big Risk=Big Rewards: One of the most important skills of a fantasy sports player is their hunch. All the top fantasy sports participants will eventually end up making the same team if they all went by the players’ recent form. This begs the question “How does one win in this scenario?” The player who wins is the one who goes for the differential. The differential is a player who is easy to miss but can prove to be the deciding factor in winning the match. This hunch is developed by playing fantasy sports regularly. Even at your workplace, when you’re implementing new strategies, it’s important to listen to what your gut is telling you. It’s the cumulative opinion of your entire experience and in 80% of the cases, it’s right.
We hope that you learned some valuable leadership lessons from this article. We are sure that if you keep engaging yourself in skill-based fantasy sports, you can derive more such learnings which we’ll be happy to add here. If you’re interested in playing fantasy sports, download Howzat. It’s India’s premier fantasy sports app with plenty of matches going live every single day.