10 business skills you can learn from playing beach volley ball

Some of you may not know that I truly enjoyed playing beach volley ball even if I am far from being a good player. While playing, I found that a lot of the best players’ skills were identical to habits a successful entrepreneur, any leader or anyone who seeks to improve one’s level of success, needs to develop. I compounded them into 10 skills you can easily master and that will surely improve your “game”.

1- You are always as lousy as your worse player.

If your want your team to lead, if you want your company to move forward and if you want to get any recognition for your hard work, you need to do either two things: Improve the people you work with or change teams. Your company will never move faster than the slowest element of the group.

Also, you will never advance faster than the speed of what slows you down the most. You need to look not only at your top qualities (the ones that make you successful) but at the chains holding you back (what you need to learn and improve, change or let go of).

2- You can’t play alone, you need a team

You can never win alone. Even if you are the best player, you need a support system to allow you to shine. Arrogant players often make the horrible mistake of wanting the game to themselves instead of making a strategic pass and usually end up hitting the ball out of the field.

3- Too many players will trip over each other.

Sounds evident. Yet, some companies will overcrowd offices, thinking they will maximize profits by decreasing working space leading to less productivity. Also, as Parkinson and his studies pointed out, you need to know when to stop hiring staff. It is better to spend the time to hire some leading experts in a field and pay them well then to fill up an office with incompetency.

This is also true in your personal life. Are you overcrowding it by too many activities or too many friends (that are not lifting you higher).

4- You need to stay in your position

When playing fours on the court, there are usually two hitters, one setter, one receiver (who takes care of the back of the court). I have seen so many accidents occur when players decide to take another role then the one they were on the field for.

The same goes in your employment. Ask your boss what your priorities are and stick to what you are supposed to do. If you are the boss, look at what your company is best at and stick to that vertical. Many companies fail because they try to spread too widely.

5- When you miss, it’s your bad but when you win, it’s a team’s effort.

Responsibility is key. You always need to take 100% of it for everything that happens in your business and personal life.

Also, remember to praise in public and criticize in private. Remember where you come from and who helped you when times were tough. Remember to acknowledge those who support you throughout your journey.

6- As soon as you make a mistake, learn and move on quickly

I usually beat myself up when I am not the best out there. But we are all learning in some way or form. What I learned from playing is that you are most likely to repeat the same mistake again if you dwell on it.

Instead, I was taught to practice the right move over and over right after. I teach reprogramming the brain for success and that is really it. You need to impress your subconscious with what you want the outcome to be and not drive your life to what you fear might go wrong by overthinking the negative.

7- If you want to play often, you need to be loud and play fearlessly

I found this true in business and life as well. Mr. Worldwide (305) says so himself “success is 10% talent and 90% marketing”. If you want to get noticed out there with your product, your thoughts, your ideas, your projects; you better be prepared to get louder than anyone else. You need to work harder, stay longer, and beat your drum like no one else. Like Will Smith would say “if I am on the treadmill against someone else, I will either die or win”.

And yes, play fearlessly. We all feel scared at times but you need to force your mind and body to move forward past the fear. Because success is located outside your comfort zone and getting out of the comfort zone is one of the scariest things. “You need to feel the fear and do it anyway.”

8- You need to have a strategy and a set of winning procedures if you want to lead.

Plan, plan, plan. Too many people act without planning and fail. Like Franklin said “If you fail to plan, you plan to fail” or Lincoln “Give me six hours to chop down a tree and I will spend the first four sharpening the ax”. Remember that an hour of planning saves you 10 hours of execution.

List your successes and fails and focus on your successes in order to create a successful way of doing things. Humbly I can say that I have done many different things in my life and been successful at them because I believe success is a way of being and doing. Learn what process works for you (or learn proven strategies of success) and then apply them consistently.

9- If you play with better players, you tend to improve your game. If your opposing team is not skilled, you will lower your game level to match theirs.

Was is Confucius who said “If you are the smartest in the room, you are in the wrong room”? If you stick around people who are less successful, you will never be pulled upwards in achieving more success.

I remember when I started playing, I was scared because I knew nothing of the game. I was very successful in other fields and even full of myself with my knowledge, reputation and the teachings I could give.

It was tough to do something I was the least knowledgeable of the group at. It taught me humility and the ability to expand in new directions, be teachable, be more open minded and broaden my perspectives.

Tai Lopez speaks of the law of 33, where 33% of your time should be spent with people who know more than you (even if those are dead – by reading), 33 with people you pull and 33 with people who are at the same level.

Mirror the people you aspiring to be like. Contact them, ask for mentors and for help, hang out in associations and groups where you would not usually go. Learn to learn and to be flexible. Learn to grow.

10- Play to win or you will lose.

Again, sounds evident but I hear so many people “try”. I will “try it and see how it goes”. That’s the sentence from hell that is sure to lead you to fail. Grab life with both hands and decide to ride it the way you want it to be and learn how. When you start a project, aim for the gold, aim for the number one position.

I am writing screenplays keeping in mind that I will win Oscars, Emmys and Globes (among other things) . I write because I cannot see myself doing otherwise but since I am doing it anyway why aim for mediocrity.

11- One extra for the road: You need to know that you can win

I remember many times in my life when I won not necessarily because I was better than anyone but because I was more certain than anyone that I would win. I remember playing a game of chess in College (two against the Canadian champion). He was playing against 21 teams. It was quite impressive. There was no chance we would beat him but we did, the only team out of the 21.

I remember applying for jobs with the absolute certainty that I was going to get it. Once, for Air Canada. Over 12,500 candidates for 150 spots for a flight attendant position. Another time, I even said it to the interviewer. I told him that I knew this job was mine. Since it was a sales job and I “sold” myself so well, I was so convincing that they hired me.

You need to boost your self esteem, your self love and build your confidence. We never get more than what we believe we deserve and we never ever get more than how much we are. You get who you are.

As Wayne Dyer would say ” change the way you look at things and the things you look at will change.” Change the way you look at yourself and the others will see you differently.

12- Another for the road: You need to visualize your win.

If you can’t imagine it, you will never ever get there, no matter your effort. If you can imagine it, you will get there even if you have no clue as to how it will become.

13- OK this is the last one: You need to live in the present moment and empty your brain from anything that is not in the “right here, right now”.

From one of my favorite movies “Way of the Peaceful Warrior”, “you need to get the trash out. The trash is what ever is keeping you from this moment right here and now. And when you do, you will be amazed by what you can achieve.”

When you stay focused, you can truly surpass any limits you thought you had and reach summits you could only dream of.