Good leaders are athletes at heart

Four qualities that make for good athletes and good leaders, alike.


The qualities that make for the world’s most successful sportsmen and women have been studied, speculated upon and even bet upon. But very few people discuss the qualities that make up good leaders. Why is that? Is it because they are in fact the same in both cases?

  • Passion

What keeps you going, day in day out? Leaders need passion to survive and thrive, just as athletes do to keep practicing.

  • Resilience

The ability to get up and try again in the face of loss. There are countless stories in every part of life that end with either resilience, or defeat. Only one path leads forward.

  • Learning from mistakes

“I’m not scared of failing, I fail all the time.”

Who said this?

A) Sir Richard Branson

B) Bill Gates

C) Andy Murray

Hard to tell, right?*

  • Desire for growth

Desire to be promoted, to master a new skill, to land a new client or project – the desire for growth is one of the key indicators of leaders and athletes alike (Kaufmann et al). It keeps you fresh, innovative and always trying to improve, be it to beat out the competition or simply for self-betterment.

Leaders are athletes – all without ever playing a sport. 

*It was C, Andy Murray.