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8 Tips for an Excellent Sport Job Video Interview

Video interviews are now common practice in the sports industry. Mainly due to the developments of the last few years, video interviews have become established in many companies. While it was an interim solution for some, the advantages have convinced many recruiters to continue offering it at least an an additional option for candidates.

So it's about time for our guide to the video interview, which shows you the right preparation and how you can best present yourself via the digital format. 

Tip No. 1: Always test the technology in advance.

Does the video tool work for you?
Your interviewer will tell you in advance what software they are using for the interview: Zoom, Microsoft Teams, Skype, Google Hangouts or something else entirely, the list is almost endless. 
It is best to download the software in advance and test how it works so that you can start the call relaxed. You may need to define your output and input devices (i.e. loudspeaker, microphone and camera) beforehand. If you have already installed the programme, make sure you have the latest version installed or that your browser is compatible with the online version of the tool.

Is your internet connection stable

Test your Wi-Fi in advance. In case the internet doesn't work, have your smartphone ready and charged. This way you can activate your hotspot and use it as an alternative connection. Most videocall providers also allow you to dial in via a phone number if your internet is not working. 

Is your camera ready for the interview? 

Whether you use a built-in camera in your notebook or an additional camera, make sure the camera lens is clean (if not, clean it gently with a soft cloth, preferably an eyeglass cleaning cloth).

Does your microphone work?
It is best to use an external microphone, as the quality of the built-in microphone in your notebook or tablet is often not good. A headset or headphones with a microphone work best. Nowadays, in-ear headphones are the common practice as they are almost invisible and usually come with a good microphone for calls. Don't worry if you prefer on-ear headphones instead: the important thing is that the recording quality is good and they are comfortable for you to wear. Besides, the classic line about pilots or Mickey Mouse can also break the ice at the beginning of the conversation.

Additional tip: If you use Bluetooth headphones, make sure all other digital products that could connect are switched off so you don't accidentally connect to your TV or phone instead of answering the call! 

Tip no. 2: Prepare the call location

Choose a room where the internet works well and is quiet to minimise disturbances during the conversation. 

Thanks to the blur filters offered by most video call programmes, your background is no longer as important. If you have the opportunity to sit in front of a wall or a room that provides little distraction, we would still advise you to do so. Because even if your background is blurred, this creates additional calm in the picture.

Another important point is whether you have enough light to see your face well. Avoid sitting in front of a window or a light source (light in the back), otherwise you will appear as a shadow. It is best to have a light source in front of you, preferably behind your notebook, so that your face is well lit.

Tip no. 3: Wear trousers or a skirt, even if they are not visible

We've all seen the meme material circulating on the internet in which well-dressed people stand up and voila - no pants! Even though it is more comfortable to dress only the visible half of the body, it is best to choose a complete outfit. Even if the style of dress depends on the company culture (sporty, casual, business), you should always dress neatly and make sure your clothes are clean and not wrinkled. 

Looking your best also helps to put you in the right frame of mind and gives you the confidence to shine in the interview.

Tip No. 4: Make sure pets and children are busy elsewhere

Not that a cat sitting in front of the camera couldn't be entertaining for your interviewer, but it could throw you off your interview game - so you should prepare as much as possible to avoid distractions during your digital interview. This doesn't just apply to pets and children, but also to things like your phone (mute it, put it out of sight or activate 'do not disturb' mode), noise (close windows, don't have the interview in a crowded place), surprise visitors (inform housemates, family members and others who might be visiting).

Tip #5: Make sure your physical needs are met beforehand

What we are saying: Go to the toilet 5 minutes before the conversation so you have to during the conversation, get some tissues in case you have to sneeze, and a glass of water to moisten your mouth and throat during the conversation.

Additional tip: You urgently need to pee during the conversation or your nose is tingling? Don't be afraid to ask for a break and briefly explain why you need to interrupt. Recruiters are (mostly) only human. 

Tip no. 6: Communication: looks, facial expressions and gestures

First of all, even if you feel very tempted to check your own appearance on the screen, do not make a habit of doing so during the conversation. Instead, keep eye contact with the camera instead.

As far as your communication is concerned, talk just like you would in a normal conversation, but without informal slang that you might use with friends. Authenticity usually comes across better in a conversation than artificial formulations - which will fall by the wayside in the day-to-day work anyway. Otherwise, show emotions, smile, look determined, depending on the topic, and use your hands (not excessively, of course). This is how you radiate energy, enthusiasm and self-confidence and create a good rapport with your conversation partner.

Tip no. 7: Think about how you can answer questions about yourself and your expectations of the sports job.

While many questions vary from company to company and recruiter to recruiter, there are a few standard questions that are usually part of every interview. Two of them are usually a variation of "Tell us about yourself" and "What do you expect from this job/employer? ". Think about how you want to answer these questions beforehand - but without memorising the answers. You need a rough direction, not a pre-formulated answer (authenticity).

By the way, you can find a complete list of classic interview questions in sports business and how to answer them on our blog here: 8 common questions in sport job interviews and how to answer them

Tip #8: Prepare a list of questions about the company. 

Take the opportunity to show your interest in the job and your confidence by asking questions yourself! This not only shows that you are curious about the job and the company, but also that you meet the recruiter at eye level.


All in all, online job interviews are usually a bit more informal than official ones, which is mainly due to the comfort of your own 4 walls. Take advantage of this, because nothing is more convincing to an interviewer than calmness in a stressful situation and a healthy self-confidence. Last but not least, keep in mind that in any dialogue, netiquette = etiquette, i.e. always let your counterpart finish. You'll do it! Good luck for your next online job interview!

What are the first steps into the sports industry?

Or to put it another way: How do you turn your interest in sport into a career? Whether you are a newcomer or a career changer - to start your career in the sports business, you should meet certain requirements. Here's how to prepare yourself for starting your career in the sport business.

Entry into the sports industry for (prospective) students and graduates

Studying basically gives you the necessary academic qualifications for a future career in sport. But what do you need to study?

These courses are suitable for a career in sport

If you want to work for a sports team or work with athletes, you should definitely study sports science. For all other professions, generic courses are just as ideal for gaining the necessary expertise, as a sports brand is just as entrepreneurial as other companies. For example, journalism for sports journalists, business studies for sports marketing and sales, event management for sports event managers, product design for sports product designers. You get the idea.

Show your interest in sport on your CV

For entry-level positions, specific professional training is not usually necessary. However, for companies, of course, an interest in sports is important, so you should definitely include the sport you do in your CV. Sport shows that you fit into the team, that you have an insight into the sports industry and is often associated with certain soft skills.

Find out how to include sport in your CV and what it says about you to a recruiter in the last blog.

Complement your studies with practical experience in sport

You can also gain an understanding of the industry through part-time jobs, student trainee positions or Sport Internships.

Another option is to help out by volunteering, for example at (youth) sporting events or competitions in your area. This way you not only gain experience, but also make contacts that can help you get started.

Reorientation in your existing job: Reasons for a change to the sports industry

A new orientation in a job is often associated with some obstacles - because those who dare to make a new start in a different profession often find themselves back at the beginning of their own career. But it doesn't always have to be a complete turnaround: Sometimes a change of industry is enough to make your job more interesting again. 

Because what many people lack in their jobs - apart from a good salary and unsuitable working hours - is often quite classic boredom in the job. This can be due to a lack of challenge, a lack of development opportunities, but also because the meaning of the job is missing or the identification with an employer or the industry itself does not exist ("Why am I actually doing this?"). 

Employees in 2021 value their own belief, shared values and a better lifestyle fit over better compensation finds the 2021 Edelman Trust Barometer Report, conducted in early August 2021 in 7 countries. Source: 2021 Edelman Trust Barometer Special Report: The Belief-Driven Employee

If sport is an important part of your (personal) life, the possibility to combine it with your job can make your daily work much more attractive. Maybe you use the products of your future employer yourself, share the same interests with your colleagues and can bring in your own view on the products as part of the target group. 

In other words, you can stand behind the industry, behind your employer and find a new passion for what you do.

The requirements for a move into the sports industry

For a change of industry to the sports industry, you need above all your previous experience and expertise in the job to re-enter the same profession or develop in a similar field, as well as an interest in sports and an understanding of the industry.

The latter is easy to read: Follow developments in sport through digital magazines like SGI Europe, through podcasts like Office Hours (or on relevant social media channels.

Ready for the change? Browse our current Sport Jobs and find your career with higher job satisfaction.

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Combined core competences in the sports industry: SGI Europe and Sportyjob start cooperation

Bidart / Munich, 08.12.2020

Sportyjob, the online job platform for the sports industry, and Sporting Goods Intelligence Europe, the leading publication and information platform for executives in the sports industry, are joining forces.

Companies and brands will be able to post their job vacancies on jobs.sgieurope.com, which will be simultaneously distributed via sportyjob.com and its partner network reaching +100.000 candidates in the sports industry. Conversely, Sportyjob customers will now also reach the high-profile, international audience of decision-makers from SGI Europe.

According to Andy Gugenheimer, CEO of Sportyjob, the advantage lies in the combination of the information-related core competencies of both partners: "The joint offer of SGI Europe and Sportyjob is a natural extension of the first-class services offered by the two leading players in their respective fields. It will provide faster and easier access to the job market and industry news for companies and job seekers alike".

With this cooperation, SGI Europe, part of EDM Publications, is expanding its existing product portfolio, which provides sports industry executives with insights, data and analysis about the international sporting goods market. EDM’s collaboration with Sportyjob now adds a recruiting service to help sports companies effectively find high-profile employees.

For Sportyjob, SGI Europe is a strong partner to expand their existing reach in an intelligent way. Since 2008, Sportyjob, a subsidiary of the leading sports headhunting agency AG Sport Consulting, has been active as a career portal specialised in the European sports industry. In addition to the job board, Sportyjob acts as an information platform with industry insights, company and university profiles, as well as exciting interviews and articles on careers in sports. As part of the cooperation, Sportyjob will also integrate a news feed from SGI on its website.

Download the Press Release (PDF):


“Determination, commitment and resilience are, in my opinion, the keys to an entrepreneur’s success.”

What motivates someone to found his own business while having a successful and steady career? Fabien Vancoille has worked in leading positions for companies like Nike, Disney and O'Neill . But instead of continueing his career there, he decided to start his own business. The motivation behind it is actually very human, a desire that can be found in almost each one of us: To pass on his knowledge to someone else. In his case, start-ups needing help in developing their commercial activity. His skills and knowledge collected in more than 20 years of working defined the base for his own company which needed exactly his range of experience, proving once more why there's a big need for Entrepreneurs 40+. Meet Fabien Vancoille.


Your Job / Company Name:

Sales Director Outsourced / Franchise at BRAS DROIT DES DIRIGEANTS Sales Management

Your Field of Profession:

Operational support for VSE/SME/Start UP managers wishing to structure and/or develop their commercial activity.

BRAS DROIT DES DIRIGEANTS in 2 or 3 sentences :

The Managers of VSEs, SMEs & Start-Up tend to have a technical background and thus, focus primarily on production. They have little time and have neither the skills to manage their business development nor the drive to manage their salespeople. My time-sharing intervention then consists in helping these companies to structure themselves, to define their commercial strategy and the associated action plan, to improve their commercial discourse, and to manage their sales team.

Careerwise, what have you been doing before you got self-employed?

I have had the chance to evolve within major American and French groups: 10 years at Nike, 4 years at Disney, 5 years at O'Neill and 3 years at Hungaria (Royer Group). After having started commercially in the field, I was able to progress and hold various positions such as Product Manager, Key Account Manager, Sales Director, Marketing and Sales Director, Country Manager, Brand Director.

That's been an impressive career that could probably have continued similarly. What was your motivation to found your own business instead?

I had already intended to create my own company about 5 years ago, without defining at the time the activity that would suit me. When I became an entrepreneur, I felt like I had regained my freedom. Moreover, working with several companies from different fields of activity to whom I can pass on my commercial and managerial knowledge is a real motivation.

With your experience as an Entrepreneur: How do you actually move from an idea to execution?

Every idea must be the object of a thorough analysis ... which must lead to a structured plan. Once the feasibility has been assessed, the actions defined and the schedule determined ... all that remains is to work, work, work!

How does your daily life differ being an entrepreneur?

One of the advantages and one of the satisfactions of my activity is that I never experience two identical days. Indeed, I split my working time between business assignments in the companies of clients (time sharing because I work an average of 1 day per week in each company), prospecting (search for future assignments) and prescription (business clubs, various events, ...), social network management, and so on.

What’s the biggest reward(s) of having your own business?

To be able to manage my agenda alone and according to my own preferences ... and to have the luxury to choose the companies I want to work with !

What, in your opinion, makes a successful entrepreneur?

Determination, commitment and resilience are, in my opinion, the keys to an entrepreneur's success.

How do you think is it different to start an entrepreneurship 40+ than in your twenties? *

Of course, I have learned a lot throughout my professional career, which has been rich in experiences, projects and encounters. This career path is an invaluable foundation and an undeniable asset on which I can rely today - and which I did not have when I was young!

For a lot of people, the fear of failure is the reason not to start their own business. What would you say to someone to convince them to go through with it anyway? Which impact did fear have on you?

To me, it seems to be a normal reaction to be afraid to take the first step. Nevertheless, it is precisely this fear that should allow you to reflect well on your project and thus to structure it well. Personally, this fear stimulates me and pushes me to be even better and better prepared.

How Vans off the Wall enhances creativity: An interview with Dirk Jacobs

Coming up with new ideas in a well established company can be tough - especially with everyone in the team living up to their specific role. Over the years the way a brand is experienced is clearly defined and established in everyones minds, taking its toll on creativity and innovation. So how do you bring your team to overcome their own mindset and practice forward-thinking? Back in April, the Original Actions Sports brand Vans off the Wall just showed the world how. In collaboration with the Design School of Politecnico di Milano, they launched the event Spring off the Wall at the biggest design program of the world, the Milano Design Week. An event which let people experience Vans off the Wall in an exciting, interactive way. Under the motto of  Speed, Balance and Vertigo, visitors of the Milano Design Week could live the sensations of skateboarding by jumping into a foam pit, surfing through clouds like a Silver Surfer or walk on huge unstable foam waffle soles.  

  What you'd expect to be the creation of a great event management / brand marketing team, was actually an idea born in a completely unorthodox way.  Dirk Jacobs, Creative Director Vans EMEA, allowed us to take a peak in the concept behind Spring off the Wall and his way of engineering creative thinking.
Dirk: "Evey year I get my team together to come up with projects that don’t necessarily have anything to do with the work priorities, but with personal development. I mean, Vans’ purpose is enabling creative expression, not just for consumers, but also for the people behind the brand. We, me and my team, get to see the personal side of professional skills. In the process, I skip all regular titles, everyone could do what they want instead of what they normally do -  I saw creativity and leadership in people that I’ve never seen in a creative field."
From the pool of projects, Dirk chooses one every year that will come to life. In 2018, the idea was to collaborate with the design school of Milano to have their students bring to life their own brand experience in a creative way.
Dirk: "We have our Brand, we have our Brand Pillars: Action Sports, Music, Art, Street Culture - all the students fit the profile of our consumer. I found it interesting to talk to the perfect target group to see how they perceive Vans, what they think about it. Also, they have an amazing reputation, so I was really intrigued by it! About 2000 students applied for the project, which was obviously too many. So we asked them in a survey about their knowledge of the brand and action sports and their personal story with Vans. I had a hundred of applications and I was going through all of them for three weeks - it was my evening lecture. Some of the stories were very personal, some were almost like poetry. I really liked them. In the end, we chose about 120 [students] and we coached them in a workshop about our brand and gave them the challenge to show what „Off the Wall“ means to them."
At the same time, the decision was made to open up Spring of the Wall to design week. Bringing the project to another level, the collaboration was turned into a mentoring program for the students. Vans rented out a space for designers coaching and encouraging the project teams on expressing themselves in a professional matter. The group was divided into teams that each were composed of students from different design disciplines: Fashion, Communication, Architecture, graphic design, etc. What came out of it, was the creation of possible spaces for the design week that were a physical expression of the brand. Giving them space, time and freedom to express themselves, with the necessary guiding through industry professionals, the students came up with ideas far away from the regular communication of Vans. Instead of focusing on a stiff presentation, the students laid their focus on creating a space of participation, letting people experience the brand with all of their senses.  

  In the next step, they separated the groups another time and chose a number of students for a final group, gave them a feedback and another week to update their idea. In the end, there were 20 students and one concept.

Dirk: „These 20 students, they wanted to talk about skateboarding. I mean I love it to death, but it was never our way to speak to a broader, more lifestyle consumer. They wanted to talk about the experience of skateboarding. But how do you explain it to someone who has never skated, taking the skateboard away? The drop in in a bowl, the importance of balance, the feeling of height“

[gallery columns="4" size="medium" ids="32008,32026,32017"]
The students of the Design School of Milano dared to address a topic close to the brand, but far away from their regular communication. Even though Vans is originally associated with skateboarding, their main audience is situated in the lifestyle section: "Vans is a nostalgic brand, and everyone has their own personal Vans story or Vans memory, like the pair you wore when you gave your first girlfriend a kiss". The innovative concept showed a great approach to being authentic and back to the roots of Vans while at the same time being forward-thinking and very unusual for the brand.  Something that was taken in positively by both the audience and the company itself.
Dirk: "The response was amazing! We had about 10.000 people for the drop in. You jumped out of a shoebox into a foampit. At first, I thought it was childish, but people did it two or three times. The jump was 2 meters high. I don’t know what it was - the simplicity brought the child out in people. People went crazy!" [gallery columns="4" size="medium" ids="32011,32014,32029"]

What does an Online Marketing Supervisor at blue tomato do? An interview with Maria Pötschke

Hi, I'm Maria ☺ I've been part of the blue tomato team since 2014! My position is called Online Marketing Supervisor, more concretely I do the Online Communications at blue tomato. Our team is mostly responsible for the creation and seeding of entertaining content. This includes several fields of activity, for example the Athlete Management.  By now, we have 150 international team riders, with the majority being organised by our Shop Team (the shops in Austria, Switzerland and Germany).  The online communications department manages the main team though - that's around 40 athletes.  What we do? Contract management, organisation of photo shootings, content creation & curation, candidate management, team collections and so on!  My colleague Nico is handling these things, my task is keeping a close eye on it - not that he'd need it though, he does an awesome job :) Furthermore, we take care of the blue tomato Social Media Channels, like Facebook, Instagram, Snapchat and Youtube. Whereas I am strategically managing the channels and Social Ads, my team creates the content - of course always in cooperation with our other departments. Another important part of the online communications is classical Content Marketing, so a lot of cooperations with various (sports) magazines, etc., and Influencer Marketing. Of course, the majority of our influencers consists of the #bluetomatoteam, so athletes that we sponsor. Additionally, we work closely with exciting personalities of the sports sector. And then there's also tons of short and long time projects, that I am contributing to or my team is a big part of.

"[I] moved to Fuerteventura for almost 2 years, working for a surf school.  After that I went back to university, always travelling & surfing for a couple of months inbetween.  This made it quite obvious for me that I wanted to work for a board- or action sports company. I already knew blue tomato as I ordered there a couple of times before - one of the few shops delivering to the canary islands ;) "


How did you end up with your current job? Could you give us some insights in your career path?

When I had finished high school, I studied sport management while working for the german basketball league. I was able to gather great insights into sports marketing and sponsoring.  Then I moved to Fuerteventura for almost 2 years, working for a surf school.  That's when I discovered my affection for board sports, especially surfing. After that I went back to university and made my Master in Public Relations, because I figured out that this is what I wanted to do.  In between I always went travelling & surfing for a couple of months and worked for a sports job board - my link to the sports industry.  This made it quite obvious for me that I wanted to work for a board- or action sports company. I already knew blue tomato as I ordered there a couple of times before - one of the few shops delivering to the canary islands ;)

What led you to apply for your job in Online Marketing at blue tomato?

That's actually a funny story: I really wasn't in the mood to write my master thesis and applied for a job in affiliate marketing at blue tomato instead. Hands down, without any qualification and experience, this had come to nothing (but at least, you can try ;)).  Instead they offered me an internship, later I changed to a full time position in Performance Marketing. So I quickly typed my master thesis and moved to Schladming, Austria in 2015. Short time after that I switched to the Online Communications Team!

What do you value most about your sport job?

What I appreciate the most in Online Marketing, especially in my field, is the constant change: Almost every day there's some update, a new feature or any innovation which could be important for our work. Since my team is the interface for a lot of different topics, we work closely with other departments - purchasing, marketing and retail marketing, customer service, the single shops, media design, IT.  Additionally, we have a lot of contact to our sponsored athletes and influencers. Put together these points create a very interesting variety of tasks and challenges which make my job at blue tomato really exciting and diversified!

After years of experience in your job - which qualities, characteristics and interests are essential for a sports online marketing job?

Definitely an understanding of marketing and the sport scene, as well as a strong feel for trends.  Furthermore, being good with numbers - a big part of Online Marketing is analysis - and being able to interpret them the right way. Else, motivation and joy in the sports industry - for me, that's the most important part.

"What I value enourmosly is the relaxed working atmosphere at blue tomato. For example, the first thing we do when we enter the office is putting on slippers.  Besides we have a flexible work model, so it's possible to go snowboarding in your lunch break or take off more time to go on a longer surftrip."


Which remarkable traits does your job bring?

What I value enourmosly is the relaxed working atmosphere at blue tomato. For example, the first thing we do when we enter the office is putting on slippers. What's also standing out is that most of my colleagues are actually real friends since we share the same interests and spend a lot of time off work. The attractive shopping conditions  and cooperations with surfcamps, snowcamps and gyms are a plus as well. Besides we have a flexible work model, so it's possible to go snowboarding in the morning or take off more time to go on a longer surftrip

What would you advise anyone who is interested in a career at blue tomato? Which skills and qualities do they need?

Of course this differs in every department, but for all of them affinity for the sports industry and passion are essential. We are all working here because we love the sector - and that's what makes us a great team.

Working in the sports business is a lot of people's big dream, the career entry without any experience prettty hard. How are the chances at blue tomato: Do you offer internships, traineeships or apprenticeships?

Yes! Blue tomato offers a variety of entry possibilities and a big part of our team started as a trainee or intern.

Are there any prejudices against the sports business or your job that you'd like to eliminate?

Haha yeah - the one that we're only on vacation and chill all day. It would be pretty cool, but doesn't stand up to reality. We all do hard work - and deserve a long vacation every now and then ;)

Talking about your free time: Which sports do you practice passionately?

Surfing ☺ And since the blue tomato office is in Schladming, in the center of  the Tauern, also snowboarding, climbing and I started mountain biking recently.
Maria's insights show what a job at blue tomato looks like - a chance for board loving, young (at heart) people who look for a family-like team. If you're interested, you can find recent job offers by blue tomato here:

Company details & job offers at blue tomato

Do I have to be sportive to apply for a sport job?

Sport jobs are currently high on demand: The fitness sector is booming and so new positions are frequently advertised. But a sport job, even when called this way, does not necessarily have to be physically demanding. Most of the offers at Sportyjob, for example, are actually in administative or creative departments.

So there's the question popping up: Do I have to be athletic to work in sports? A classic yes-but-no-situation.

Your own interests in sports decide how you do your work

Careers in online marketing, sponsoring management, sportswear designer or brand manager (...) are mainly office-based sport jobs. Truth be told: There's a lot of sitting involved - so you probably even like your little workout at the end of the day. Nevertheless, being athletic is not necessarily important to get hired or to do a good job. Here's the big BUT - You should still bring along some sport-affinity. The named careers all have one thing in common: You need to know what your peer group wants and needs. This means you should be able to put yourself into the position of an athlete and have detailed knowledge about the discipline your sport job is all about. Of course, being a big fan of it without executing can still give you a lot of expert knowledge, but the little details - that's something you figure out when you get active yourself.

You can choose to get active to do a better job

We learned that you don't have to challenge yourself, as long as you do an intensive examination of the regarding discipline. Anyway, the time you spend reading (or watching) about it would also be a great chance to actually try it instead. Through this active preoccupation with your the field of your sport job, you will probably end up way more motivated, creative and authentic. A product designer for snowboards will achieve no credibility if he doesn’t know how to ride snowboards.

The sports industry wants experts in their fields

The industry has a similar opinion on this. Often, you will find former professional athletes in the office careers of Red Bull Media, adidas & co. As they bring a huge amount of sport-specific knowledge along, they are also perfect contributors for business development (Sales, Product Development, Marketing - every department). Even though an event manager for sport competitions may not compete anymore, thanks to his experiences he will have the perfect concept for the event. No need to run the New York Marathon next year, but if you go running every couple of days, developing a communication plan for the social media channels of runtastic gets a lot easier, don't you think?

Calling passionate non-athletes: Please apply anyway

Don't feel the pressure to become a professional athlete now. Sports companies are looking for the same hard and soft skills as any other companies. So if you are not an active person, this doesn't mean you can't apply for a sport job. If you are intested in the company, the job and bring knowledge, skills or hidden talents, there's almost no employer who wouldn't like to get to know you. What we tried to make clear in this post, is that the only thing really essential for a job in the sports industry is passion. You see: the group of friends kicking a ball on the street, the boy playing a match every weekend with his amateur team, his family cheering on the side of the field, the soccer fan watching every single match of their favorite team live or on TV, Cristiano Ronaldo being a professional football player - they all have one thing in common. And that's the passion for a sports. A sport job you have no affinity for, no connection to or at least a relation on a mental level won’t be an ideal career for you.


How companies choose their employees in 2017 – JobTrends 2017

The JobTrends 2017 study shows how companies and personnel managers choose possible job candidates.
After graduation, it's time to score the first job and make an entry in our dream career. We try to be flawless in our CVs, want to make an unique impression to be the perfect candidate for our future sport jobs. But writing the perfect application is far away from being easy, especially if we don't know exactly what an employer is looking for in a candidate. That's why the german Staufelbiel Institut und Kienbaum asked 297 companies how they choose new employees and which criteria are crucial to be hired. Thanks to the study JobTrends2017, we get a great insight on what companies and personnel managers expect from a candidate.

The CV leaves the first impression

When receiving dozens of applications for a job, the selection needs to be quick. Personnel manager only take a few minutes to pre-select possible candidates for a job interview. That's why they focus on the CV for the first impression.
"On average recruiters spend less than 2 minutes in the selection phase, so give yourself every chance of success." Andy Gugenheimer in Want to work in the sports industry?
So, how to suceed? According to the study, your CV should be well-structured and clean. Spelling mistakes, a wrong adress or contact are absolute no-gos. Also, the following aspects need to be a part of it:
  • the final grade
  • language skills (a foreign language is a big plus)
  • in non-english companies: english skills
  • work experience, i.e. internships or part-time jobs
Don't be scared if your final grade isn't perfect: Companies prefer work experience over flawless marks. Still, this doesn't mean the letter of moviation doesn't matter. More than 70% of the personnel recruiters make their decision based on your cover note. Important: Keep it individual, no copy-pasting. Even though, more and more companies accept an application without a photo, 82% are still convinced that it completes the application

Soft skills matter

Let your application speak for yourself. It shouldn't only show your experience and hard skills, but also your personal qualities. Soft skills are crucial critera for every job. Personnel recruiters want to see your
  • initiative
  • commitment
  • communication skills
  • team spirit
  • performance orientation
  • willingness to learn
Just to name a few. All of these are important for 90% - 100& of all companies.

Economics, IT or Engeneering? What companies are looking for

The study asked companies from different industry sectors (automotives, banking, chemistry/pharmaceutical, consulting, trade and IT) for their desired studies. Overall, the most looked for candidates are economists. But also IT and engeneering graduates have great job possibilities in all sectors. Of course, this differs a lot regarding the business. In chemistry and pharmaceutical the most looked for employees were scientists - next to engineers.

The study by Staufenbiel: Further information

The questions also concerned salaries for career entries and internships, as well as contracts, possible benefits and more. If you want to know more about the desires of companies in 2017, you can find the whole JobTrends 2017 report to download here.

How to score in a job interview

How to behave in a job interview
You got invited to a job interview? Congratulations! Your application convinced the company that you are one of the possible top candidates for the free position. What you need to do now, is giving them your best self in the interview to score the job. In the previous blogs, we already hinted on a checklist on how to prepare for the interview and what to wear to succeed. Now it's time to consider on how to answer and present yourself. We keep it short - these points won’t need any more explication. The interview is the moment to show them what you got. You’ll need to be self-confident and sell yourself as the best possible employee for the job. So, no questions asked - this is how you do it!

The body language

The interview is not only about the things you say, but also the ones you express with your gestures. Needless to say, it's all about showing your self-confidence and openness - two things which are transfered by body language.  That's why:
  • When you enter, smile, search eye contact and greet everyone in the room with a firm handshake
  • All the time, try to hold (natural) eye contact, without starring - if there is more than one interviewer, switch between the different persons without rushing it
  • Same for a slight smile - keep a friendly and self-confident look all the time
  • Control your posture - sit up straight, but not stiff - it's about an open body language
  • Don’t cross your arms before your chest. Better: Keep them relaxed in your lap

How to speak

Similar to your body language, how you answer will tell your interviewer a lot about yourself. Of course, what you say is giving away essential information, but so is the way you speak. It is important to
  • Avoid slang and pause words
  • Speak clearly and in a moderate volume
  • Talk in whole sentences, even when a yes or no questions comes up - the details in your answer will stand out from the ones of your competitors

Your answers to make the best impression

Now we reach the main part of your interview - the content of your answers. Keep in mind that your answers aren't only for impressing your dream employee. It's also your chance to figure out whether the job fits you.  Please, be honest in your answers - if you need to conceal your true thoughts on too many occasions, the job and the company are not the right one for you. Furthermore,
According to Andy Gugenheimer, Headhunter for the Sports Industry and CEO of Sportyjob, your skills and individual performance is what the company wants to see in an interview. Nevertheless, the possibility to integrate individuals in a team is - especially in the sports industry - a very important factor to be hired. Even when you bring amazing skills on your own - if you aren't a team player, you probably won't get a chance to prove yourself. By using "us" and "we" when answerings specific questions about possible projects and tasks, instead of "I", you'll express your will to work in a team.

  • Answer the questions in the best possible way by showing a) the information you collected before about what you know about the company b) the skills, experience and strengths you can bring into the company
  • Don’t push it though - no need to show off, try to be self-confident, but natural
  • Show enthusiasms and passion for the job
  • Avoid asking too much about possible benefits - it’s ok to talk about salary and other labour conditions though, but wait until your interviewers will bring up the topic
  • Avoid talking about your former employer or colleagues in a negative way - they will conclude that you might talk about them the same way
  • Ask the questions you prepared or ones that haven’t been answered by the interview
  • At the end, thank the interviewers for their time and tell them you’re interested in the job - the interview is meant for both sides to figure out if the job fits, so be open about your conclusion

How to decide for the right sport job

A whiteboard might help for making decisions

Well, there it is – after long weeks of writing applications, sport job interviews and rejections you finally got the first confirmation that you got the sport job. Yay, what a great feeling! But wait a second; is it really the best choice? Shouldn’t you wait for other companies to reply or even contact more employers before signing the contract?

This choice definitely isn’t an easy one, especially when your potential sport job employer would love to have an answer asap and all the other sport job companies haven’t got back to you yet. But what to do now? Just sign the contract and be safe or wait and push your luck to get a better sport job offer from another company?

When deciding for a sport job in our opinion there are four crucial criteria: content of the sport job, the company itself, location and payment. Concerning these points everyone needs to rank them on the basis of his/her own preferences and decide, what is most important and where it is possible to lower one’s sights.

Sport job content

Of course you wouldn’t land a sport job if you wouldn’t be qualified and suitable enough for the sport job. But sometimes one is desperate enough to apply for sport jobs that are not the real deal. At this point you need to ask yourself, if you will be happy and satisfied in future in this position. Are there attractive further education options? Are the contents exciting enough to keep you attached? Does it provide all the responsibility, creativity and room for development you wish for?


This criterion is all about asking yourself if you back the company, its mission, vision, philosophy and products. Are you able to defend the conditions of productions? How was the first impression during the sport job interview? How seems the working climate to be like? Are you able to identify with the company? Of course you only apply at companies that seem to be trustworthy employers, but at times you are already noticing during the job talk that this idea was wrong.


Well, this might sound a bit banal, but the sport job location indeed is an important factor. Of course, you can make every place in the world your home, but in the end you will spend plenty of lifetime over there (even if it is only 1 year – life is too short to waste it). So think about what you need to be happy: friends and family being close? Which language you prefer? Want to work in foreign countries? How is the infrastructre? What about the cultural scene? Any leisure opportunities you need to be happy?


The fourth criterion is the sport job payment. Is it above your absolute limit or below? Are there other outstanding aspects like a perfect location that will make you accept less or is this the one point you can’t lower your expectations?

Of course the mentioned criteria are only examples – everyone needs to decide on his own what he/she needs and what is essential. According to personal preferences there also could be other or more criteria to consider. At the end of the day (yes – we know, this is a spoiler) you should go with your gut. But since nowadays we tend to think twice (thrice, quadruply…) about our career options, today’s sport job blog can be considered as a little decision support for you.


Are you still on the sport job search and interested in further information? Check out our series on how to find the right sport job:

How to find the right sport job – part 1: the various sport divisions

How to find the right sport job - part 2: potential employers

How to find the right sport job – part 3: what kind of jobs do companies in the sports industry offer? How to find the right sport job - part 4: where there's a will, there's a way.