As you probably heard, McKinsey, Bain and BCG, along with other elite firms like Goldman Sachs, love to hire Olympians, especially gold medalists. So learn from one. In this episode of the Case Interview & Strategy Tools Show we interviewed 3x Olympian (2x gold), Sami Jo Small. Take advantage of the candid and detailed insights Sami shares to learn how to develop and exhibit the qualities elite firms so keenly seek.
“For such a long time you were taught to hate the American team because it is our main rival. But in reality… nobody else is going through the life that we are living but them. They are the only ones that really understand us inside and out.”
-Sami Jo Small [54:00]
Sami Jo Small is a legend in Ice Hockey. As a 3x Olympian and 5x World Champion, she is also a renowned motivational speaker, author, owner of a hockey school across four Canadian provinces and Stanford alum with a degree in mechanical engineering.
We interviewed Sami Jo since several readers asked if we could interview athletes who have reached the global pinnacle of their career. Sami Jo certainly fits that description. Sami’s hockey career began in 1981, at the age of five, on the outdoor hockey rinks of Winnipeg. She dreamed of playing in the NHL and Olympic Games. Standing out among peers in the boys minor hockey system was no easy task, given she was the only girl. She had to prove each day she belonged, which she did with flying colours until the day she was kicked out of the league because she was a girl. She was just 11 years old at the time.
Sami recalls, “they said it would be difficult traveling with a girl on the team”.
Sami Jo has since won five World Championships. She is also a three time Olympian and has been a member of two Olympic Gold Medal Winning teams. She is also a honorary member of the Hockey Hall of Fame in Toronto – the shrine to major league hockey. She helped start the Canadian Women’s Hockey League where she continues to play elite hockey for the Toronto Furies.
In this episode Sami Jo talks about how she turned things around, the secret sauce of her success and what are her main sources of inspiration. This is an incredibly useful and inspiring podcast.
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QUESTION(S) OF THE DAY: What do you think is the secret sauce for success when it comes to professional athletes? Do you think the same methods that enable world-class athletes to reach the top are equally effective in business, including management consulting? Please share in the comments.
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