Monday, May 5, 2014

Becoming a Professional MVP: Preparing for Draft Day

The first round of the NFL draft will be taking place on primetime television this coming Thursday, May 8th. As the NFL teams will be jockeying for position, power and presence to make selections based on their own needs and wants, the college football players vying for a spot on the roster will simply have to wait anxiously for their name to be called.

Hopefully those athletes have done enough up until this point to make it known that their skill set and talents will prove to be invaluable for any team that selects them during the draft. Because at this point….the time has run out for them to show any scouts another pass, another tackle, another block, another route, etc.

These athletes have endured through the highs and lows of playing competitive college football, have been put to the test during the “Underwear Olympics”, and have showcased their skills during planned pro-days. It’s now time for them to see if those organizations want what they can offer. And so it begins…hopefully all the hard work and determination they have poured out over the years allows for their name to be called during the NFL draft selection. It’s go time, fingers crossed….

For those of us currently applying to internships/jobs, we can only hope that the preparation and work ethic we have put forth prior to submitting that application will also allow for the opportunity to hear our name be called during that hiring process (draft day). I’m sure most of us network like crazy to hopefully have someone speak on our behalf, but let’s be reminded that it will ultimately come down to our own merit as to whether or not we will have longevity within that organization. So to help build your confidence level prior to and during the process of interviewing, use the following three easy-to-follow tips:

Ask yourself, “What makes me unique”? Seems like a simple question but can sometimes be so hard to answer…effectively. If you are able to articulate this clearly and confidently, the hiring manager will pay more attention to you as a strong candidate.

Understand the fundamentals. Take time to learn about the organization’s mission and how your skill set can be applied to make an immediate and positive impact within their culture.

Be self-aware. The most rewarded applicants have realistic assessments of their own abilities – their strengths and weaknesses, their effect on others, and the gaps that need to be filled.

On draft day, you don’t want to be the athlete that wished there was more time to prepare. Finding the right job at the right organization is all about (1) timing and (2) availability – make sure that you prepare yourself PRIOR to draft day as best as you can so your confidence level remains high.

 Patrick is a MS, Sport Management candidate at Drexel University set to graduate in Summer 2014. He is the Business and Operations Graduate Assistant for Drexel Athletics and is responsible for supporting the Administration and Operations staff of Drexel's Athletic Cabinet this year. Gallagher graduated with a Bachelors of Science in Business Administration, majoring in marketing and management, in May 2006 from Villanova University. During his enrollment, he was named Captain of the men's varsity soccer team and was appointed President of SAAC. He is looking to use his professional experience as a media sales consultant in New York, coupled with his passion for sports, to pursue a successful career in athletic administration.
You can connect with Patrick Gallagher on LinkedIn

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