Map Sports

How Wholistic Management Can Help Your Career


Show me the money!

For many people they are the four words that sum up player management. Like Gordon Geko’s "greed is good" has been applied to those on Wall Street, the image of Jerry Maguire sitting in his office yelling "show me the money!" is thought to be the catch phrase of greedy player managers milking clubs and players for all they are worth.

But of course for those who have watched the 1996 film, the story is very different. Jerry Maguire is not demanding more money; in fact it’s quite the opposite. It could even been argued that Jerry is the prototype of what a player management should be.

The story of Jerry Maguire is one about his clients. Tired of representing a galaxy of stars and trading them as a commodity with no interest in their health or wellbeing, Jerry branches out to start his own management company focused on the athlete and not his own bottom line.

Like many movies there is, of course, a grain of truth in Jerry Maguire. For many, the perception of a typical player manager is something of a combination of a lawyer, used car sales man, and real estate agent.

But luckily the reality, in most cases, is much different. Just like Jerry Maguire, player managers are now taking a more wholistic approach to servicing their clients, and the athletes are the big winners.

 

What is Wholistic Player Management?

‘Wholistic player management’ is an approach to management where the player manager does much more than negotiate contracts. Instead they assist the player with all aspects of their career, help establish and environment in which they can succeed, and help to ensure the athlete is prepared to transition into life after sport.

 

What does Wholistic Player Management Involve?

A wholistic approach to player management will provide the athlete with a range of services to provide the best possible environment, as well as maximise earning potential.

Some aspects of wholistic player management include:
 

* Career Advice & Mentoring – tapping into the skills and experience of a player manager is vital for any elite or up and coming athlete. Many managers have the knowledge to know where to best place athletes so they can flourish, and can provide general advice and support throughout their career (just look at Adam Cuthbertson’s recent decision to leave the NRL and play for Leeds Rhinos in the European Super League).

Good player managers will also provide a network of mentors for their athletes. Having an experience senior player to lean on in tough times, and to provide general guidance can be a great help to a young athlete as they begin their career.
 

* Life After Sport Planning – for many athletes, what they will do after hanging up the boots is often an afterthought. It is vital, however, to start planning for your post-playing career as soon as possible – for not only leveraging sport profile for business brand development, but also to ensure that the transition from being an athlete is as smooth as possible.

Player managers with a holistic approach to management will help athletes put the pieces into place early while playing. This can involve helping to ensure athletes complete relevant training or education, helping to save and invest money for any post career business ventures, and building a strong reputation and brand in the community.
 

* Delivering the Correct Advice – athletes around the world are infamous for how quickly they spend money and how easily they are taken in by unscrupulous characters. A good player manager will ensure that players receive the best possible advice regarding their career, including legal advice for contracts, financial advice for investments, and accounting advice for the spending of money.
 

* Establishing Life in a New Environment – with the new era of professional sport, more than ever athletes move cities, states, and even countries. Good player managers will help their athletes with this transition, whether its sourcing accommodation, helping with logistics or helping establish a new support network, taking the stress out of a new environment helps the athlete focus on their sporting performance.
 

* Media and Public Appearances – to help maximise earnings both during and post career, it is vital for an athlete to have a strong, positive, and credible profile in the media, and to be known in the community. Sourcing appearance opportunities and ensuring their athletes are regularly profiled in the media is a key component for any player manager.

Going hand in hand with sourcing media and public appearances is media management. In an age of digital media and online profiles, reputation management is more important than ever. Good player managers will help train their athletes how to engage with the media and how to best use social profiles not only to ensure there are no gaffs, but to effectively promote the athlete to the community.
 

* Sport Sponsorship – aside from their playing contract, sponsorship provides another source of income for any elite athlete. However sponsorship is about more than simply putting a logo on a shirt, wholistic player managers will help in sourcing sponsors which align with the core values of each individual athlete, and have the contacts within industry to make deals happen.
 

If you would like to see how a wholistic approach to player management can help maximise your earning potential and help you have the best chance of success contact Map Sports at andrewp@mapsports.com.au or + 61 2 8705 5464.