Usain Bolt: Entrepreneurship lessons from the man with lightning speed

Usain Bolt: Entrepreneurship lessons from the man with lightning speed

Usain Bolt also known as The Lightning Bolt, is currently the fastest man in history and he is on the verge of making Olympic history by winning the ‘triple-triple’. In order to achieve this feat, he needs to win gold in the 200m sprints as well as the 4x100m relay in addition to the 100m

Usain Bolt also known as The Lightning Bolt, is currently the fastest man in history and he is on the verge of making Olympic history by winning the ‘triple-triple’. In order to achieve this feat, he needs to win gold in the 200m sprints as well as the 4x100m relay in addition to the 100m gold medal he won on Sunday night; having previously won them all at the 2008 and 2012 Olympics.

Since his rise to prominence at the 2008 Olympics, although Bolt ages with each passing year, he has gone on to improve his timing in every race he partakes in, thereby setting new world records and breaking them only to set new ones in subsequent competitions. Achieving this level of success is no mean feat, as the level of discipline, preparedness and training required amongst others is worthy of mention.

Here are a few entrepreneurship lessons to learn from the man himself, Usain; The Lightning Bolt!

  1. Concentrate on your strength

Knowing what works for you is a great plus for every entrepreneur. For instance, most successful people and entrepreneurs rise early to kick start their day but Bolt said at the IMD event in 2012 that he is not a morning person and he gets up from his bed around 10am in the morning. That is what works for him and he doesn’t force it!

Talking about his technique at the event he said: “I was always a bad starter. I’m still not great but my coach Glen Mills told me the last 50 meters is the best part of my race, so I should just concentrate on getting to top speed.” For a race as short as the 100m, the best bet is usually to have a great starting technique but he knew if he could improve a little on his starting technique and concentrate more on the remaining 50m dash where his strength lies, he would be unstoppable.

  1. Defy the norm

For a six-foot-five (6ft5), Bolt is suited to succeed better at the long distance races and so he was advised to concentrate on the 400-meter foot race. He was confident enough in his ability and stuck to his decision to compete in the 100m and 200m dash. He went against conventional thinking and he has not regretted the decision ever since then.

  1. Set goals

“I really want (the) 200m world record. If I can get a good rest after the semi-finals, there’s a possibility I could,” he told journalists after Sunday night’s Olympic gold medal in the 100m final.

Goals give you a sense of direction and focus. It gives you that motivation to keep going even after immense success. Asked how he manages to keep himself motivated after so much success, Bolt said “you have to set goals. Mine is to be one of the greatest athletes ever to do the sport.” This is what keeps him going as an athlete, no wonder he is shattering records and setting new ones every time he steps up to compete.

  1. Work hard but also play hard

When asked what he will be doing when he retires from athletics he said: “Well, the professional answer is to have a business and work hard. But I also just want to put my feet up and play video games all day!”

Clearly, the lightening bolt admits that success takes a lot of hardwork while he also sees the need to play hard as well. For him, the difficult part of his job is the grueling training sessions, gym sessions and all the physical training routines he is mandated to undergo by his coach to be physically fit. But the motivation for him comes when he looks at the medals and success the hardwork has gotten him thus far.

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  1. Turn setbacks into comebacks

At certain points in life, entrepreneurs will experience setbacks but how they react to it each time is what determines if they will be successful or not. For Bolt, he had his setbacks (injury problems, criticisms, elimination from the 2011 World Championships after a false start and losing to his training partner Yohan Blake in 2012) at a very tender age and at the beginning of his career but through it, he built mental and physical toughness and came back stronger.

  1. Enjoy what you do

The importance of being passionate about what you do cannot be overestimated. When everything else fails, this keeps you going and Bolt also shares in this sentiment. “I love competing,” he said. “If you enjoy what you are doing, then it is much easier to be successful.”

  1. Sacrifice

You don’t achieve Bolt’s level of success without making painful sacrifices. On several occasions, Bolt has professed his love for junk food but the majority of his diet is incredibly clean and rationed out. WHY? Because he has to sacrifice eating junk food for success. He needs to eat clean food to remain at the level he is physically and maintain he athletic shape. He has a personal chef who makes sure he eats everything he’s supposed to and lays out his vitamins and supplements so he can’t forget to take them.

  1. Composed when under pressure

There is this pressure that comes with being the best and everybody aims to beat you but in the midst of all that pressure especially before a race, Bolt is always calm. He steps out of the tunnel on to the track applauding and interacting with the fans.

When under immense pressure, his calm demeanor and the management of his anxiety levels is class act and second to none.

       9. Have a team with aligning goals

When you have a team, partner(s) or trainer with similar vision and goals, it can only get better for you. Bolt and his coach, Glen Mills have symbiotic goals. Bolt aims to be an athletic legend. Mills is ultimately aiming to be the most successful athletics coach in history. Achievement of Bolt’s goal clearly supports the achievement of Mills’ goal. Achievement of Mills’ goal supports the achievement of Bolt’s goal and it can only get better for both parties

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