So, I went to the S.E.A.T. Conference (@SeatConference) last week in Dallas and expected to learn about digital and data in the sports & entertainment business and got so much more. Not only did I get a first-hand look at the top digital strategies in our business but got culture and leadership lessons.
My very first session was a brilliant discussion led by two of my favorite sports business minds – Jack Elkins (@persportives) & Peter Sorckoff (@PeterSorckoff) – where we learned the power of innovative thinking and coaching.
Elkins inspired us to have “Bold Ambitions” and a process to coach our teams. The simple reminder to just ask someone “what’s on your mind?” resonated with me as did the more important follow-up question of “what else is on your mind?” is something that I’ll add to my daily internal mindsets.
Sorckoff, who many of us know from his tenure as Chief Creative Officer from the Atlanta Hawks challenged us to write a mission statement for ourselves. Easier said than done as it requires self-reflection and equally a strong awareness.
Here’s my stab at it for me: “A grateful, compassionate and restorative learner who strives to and help others see color where most see black and white.”
I’ve already taken this lesson and challenged some of our 4FRONT rising stars to do the same and would encourage all my friends in #SportsBiz to do the same.
The bookend of my S.E.A.T. experience was a panel I was on entitled “Creating an Ecosystem of Revenue Streams from Sponsorships.” The session was led by Mitch Helgerson, Sr Vice President, Marketing & Ticket Sales at the Minnesota Wild and I was joined on stage by Bill Bailey, SVP Sports & Entertainment at SSB and Joe Gottfried (@JoeGottfried), Director of Media Integration at Maple Leafs Sports & Entertainment.
As with my first session, this session was no different as it evolved beyond the digital tactics of what we do into a culture and leadership discussion.
We learned from Joe the powerful lesson that a great digital strategy is really an organizational and collaborative mindset. From my perspective, the Maple Leafs get it. They understand to think beyond departments and divisions to think like a brand to provide the most robust solutions in an ego-less environment.
I admittedly too got emotional when I shared a clip from the New York Yankees from a collaborative and organizational video that brought the organization together to fight bullying. Check it out: https://twitter.com/yankees/status/986646949788094464?lang=en
Organizational and collaborative mindsets.
These are the powerful lessons I’m taking from S.E.A.T. and thank you to Christine Stoffel @CBRCIO for another amazing experience.
Can’t wait for Daytona in 2019!