Winning Women

In an exciting new initiative between Winners Recruitment and Womensport and Recreation Victoria (WSRV), a program is being launched that sets to unlock the potential that sports women have to offer Australian business.

John McCaskill

Sports women do it tough. If the media covers a female athlete, sporting prowess seems to take second place. That’s if it gets coverage. Without coverage, many young women fail to secure lucrative sponsorship deals. This means that unlike their male counterparts in sports such as AFL, female athletes work full-time jobs and have to train in their own time. By stepping in and assisting them early in their sporting careers, this is the situation that Winners Recruitment is trying to help young sportswomen avoid.

As a co founder and Director of the Australian Sports Leadership Network, John McCaskill (Director of Winners) is a keen advocate and promoter of leadership in sport, skills that he sees highly applicable to today’s hardware business. This program prepares the athletes by means of career assessment, job preparation, recruitment and placement. Winners then will include a summary of the athlete and her desired career direction for prospective employers to consider.

The employer and athlete assisted by Winners, meet and agree on a meaningful career path for the benefit of both parties, and the company then has a grateful committed employee working in a relevant skill area. There is a small placement fee of $2,000 which is paid as a donation to WSRV. Meanwhile, a potential champion Australian athlete is able to pursue her sporting dream knowing she has a meaningful career balanced in conjunction with sport. As a specialty provider, Winners Executive Recruitment undertakes middle management to senior level recruitment, executive search and sales force strategy and development. Clearly focused on specific market sectors, Winners is well recognised as a major provider of Recruitment Services in these areas. It is this personal approach that enables Winners to specifically target candidates that not only fit organizations, but will stay with that business. What this initiative sets out to do, is create partnerships that see sportswomen working for a company as they follow their sporting passion. Then, when their sporting careers are over, they continue the career path already started with the business that supported them while they played.

WSRV members are not members of the Australian or Victorian Institute of Sports, so some train without the regular assistance of a structure support service. Many of the athletes have tertiary or vocational qualifications however many are concerned about what they will do when the sporting life is over.

Through psychological, aptitude and skills testing, the Winners Team can work with the sportswomen to work out what careers they are suited to, what they would be most able to work within ‘and then place them in suitable businesses. If this happens early in their career, they are able to give their energies to not only their sport, but also a business where they have a future.

Recently, WSRV conducted a survey with its members which highlighted that the desire for relevant “real” employment is one of their highest priorities. “Concern over career options and direction is consistently in the top five issues,” said Angie Wilson, Project Officer for Womensport and Recreation Victoria. “If Winners can help alleviate that, everyone’s a winner. Where Winners will be of greater assistance, is as a negotiating body between the employer and the athlete, to ensure that she has the flexibility to devote time to her sporting and training commitments.” For more information visit:www.womensport.com.au.