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How lessons from sport can help in these exceptional times

Hi I am Kingsley Johnson.

Sport was always going to be a part of my life. My mum was a promising sprinter and netball player and my dad took up karate before I was born, achieving GB coaching standard and today still runs a successful karate school. Even my granny was a mean cricket player back in Summer Hill, Jamaica!

For me, it was all about football. Soon after learning to walk I had a ball at my feet. I played at school, college, university, and I still play 11-aside to this day. Growing up, my sporting heroes (other than Granny!) were Liverpool’s John Barnes and Arsenal’s Ian Wright. The mastery of their sport and ability to make the impossible look easy, fascinated me.

But what, you may ask, has all of this got to do with being an entrepreneur? Well for me some of the key lessons and psychology of elite sport have greatly impacted my career and now my business; Kinetic People Development (or Kinetic PD to our friends).

We help organisations apply principles of psychology from elite sport into their teams, using our hand-picked elite athletes and business trainers to help drive high performance behaviours, attitudes and mindsets in the workplace by providing people with the tools and techniques to be the best versions of themselves.

For example, the world of sport is dominated by stories of resilience and bouncing back; take Michael Johnson, the four-time Olympic gold medal winning sprinter, who in September 2018 suffered a stroke and lost the ability to walk. During his rehabilitation he said it took him 15 minutes to walk 200 metres, something he used do in under 20 seconds. Or Serena Williams, the 23-time Tennis Grand Slam winner, who at the age of 37 and just 10 months after giving birth made it to the 2019 final of Wimbledon.

For elite athletes, self-awareness is another shared characteristic. The champions all talk about the importance of knowing yourself, listening to your body and having the mindset to succeed.

At Kinetic PD we believe that resilience, self-awareness, and emotional intelligence, whether as a leader or as a team member, is absolutely vital at work particularly during these exceptional times. Organisations are having to make difficult decisions daily and are increasingly looking to invest in their people. There is a real urge to develop, learn and use this time wisely to prepare for ‘the new normal’, and those organisations making these investments will come out strongest.

As an entrepreneur, my goal is to help people achieve more. As a business we do this by supporting our clients, partnering with like-minded thought leaders and sharing our knowledge. If this connects with you, we’d love you to join our tribe!


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