It’s that time of year again when our teams have just finished their seasons, but we are nevertheless already reading about who’s coming into the starting line-up in the fall, what talent clubs are looking out for and who is brave enough to hit the reset button and restart their career at a new club, with a new coach and/or new teammates and in a new city.

I’ve had my own experience of being in this transfer window… re-evaluating my career, looking at what can make me better, bolder, more focused. The Talent Carousel email popped into my inbox last summer: a two-year development program that offers a unique combination of cross-functional, cross-cultural exposure, experience and support within the adidas Group.

Hockey is my passion and a huge part of my professional life with the Reebok-CCM Hockey division, so I listened to the great Wayne Gretzky’s advice, ‘You miss 100% of the shots you don’t take,’ and took them all at once, moving job, house and family from Montreal, Canada to adidas Group HQ in Germany.

The very act of going through the move has helped me prioritize what’s important. And I don’t just mean what “stuff” we would take with us.

It made me re-evaluate what ties me to my place of origin, what I would miss and what I was actually glad to leave behind. It definitely reinforced my life values and made me a better person, a better husband and a better father. I know it’s a bold statement, but only by realizing what is truly important in life for me am I more focused.

From time to time changes make you re-evaluate your life and look at certain things from a different perspective.

‘There is no growth in comfort. But there is no comfort in growth.’

Cultural shock? Embrace it all!

I swapped the ice rink for the 'football' stadium.
Getting to know Bavarian culture. Prost!
01 of

I realize now that I was very comfortable in my life in general and became unconsciously lazy. On the professional side, I ended up carving a pattern and repeating it constantly in different ways to bring products to market. Humans are creatures of habit. Because it’s safe. We’re all guilty of it. Being able to foresee (or rather predict!) the outcome was very reassuring for me. But not this time. Trust me, I tried to project myself and plan everything in preparation for my new challenge.

But I had to accept not having all the answers. It’s scary, but it’s also very exciting.

Learning a new language makes me feel like I’m seven years old all over again. I feel exposed, vulnerable… that is a very humbling experience and it’s transforming me.

So as the summer transfer window talk heats up, think about your own career. You can either jump on the carousel or watch it spin around without you.

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by Bernardo 01.06.2016
Hi Marc,
great story! Thanks for sharing!
I myself did something similar, when I decided to move from Brazil to Germany for college. Eventhough I was already familiar with the language, the cultural schock was brutal.
Now, I've been already for 14 years in Germany (and still counting) and thinking a lot about making a similar move in my career. However not that drastic... :-)
So, it's great to hear about other people's experiences.
I hope you and your family are still enjoying yourselves in Germany!

Best regards,
Bernardo
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by Philana-Lee Gouws 02.06.2016
Marc, love the enthusiasm and commitment to change, which ultimately brings along so many learnings and excitement. Loved reading your insights, and hope to catch up soon.
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by stew clark 02.06.2016
Proud of you MAC!!!
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by Julian Groom 03.06.2016
Hi Marc,

Great to hear that you accepted the challenge on behalf of your Career & Family and have also been rewarded with the experience of learning about new Cultures and Languages.

It's never easy ...

But why look back in life with regret as you get older.

Cheerio

Julian

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by Andrew 03.06.2016
Marc, thanks for sharing your personal experience with moving abroad. Very well written! My wife and I made a similar move last year from Reebok Canton to HZO Headquarters and you captured all of the emotions, challenges, and realizations here in your article. 'Unconsciously lazy', almost as if your life is on autopilot! But you don't realize until you shake things up.

Cheers,
Andrew
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by Andrew 03.06.2016
Marc, thanks for sharing your personal experience with moving abroad. Very well written! My wife and I made a similar move last year from Reebok Canton to HZO Headquarters and you captured all of the emotions, challenges, and realizations here in your article. 'Unconsciously lazy', almost as if your life is on autopilot! But you don't realize until you shake things up.

Cheers,
Andrew
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by Terrell Allen 06.06.2016
Awesome story! I recently moved from the US to China to become the director of a basketball program. Serious culture change but it has been an great experience so far!
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by Matty Farr 14.06.2016
Yeah MAC - pumped for you man! Look forward to seeing you soon.
Cheers
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by Bonjour! 16.06.2016
We still miss you in Montreal, but we are very happy for you! Merci pours les infos :)
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by Sports Guru Craig 09.07.2016
I'm happy that you were able to take that leap of faith and leave your comfort zone. That is something that tends to hold people back not only in sports but almost every facet of life.

Go get it!
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by Sharene 10.02.2017
Marc,

Great, refreshing article. Thanks for sharing! Growing up a competitive athlete, I definitely could relate to your 'reset' button mentality. It has a lot to do with being self aware and where you're trying to take yourself as an athlete, and in this case, your career.

I've actually been considering switching industries - from finance, which I've been in for about 4 years, to sports retail or sports marketing. Seeing you began your career in gaming, do you have any pointers for such a transition? As if taking the huge leap of faith of considering changing jobs isn't big enough... :)

Hope to hear some of your insight.

My very best,
Sharene
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by MAC Sharene 14.02.2017
Hello Sharene, thanks for reaching out.
The sport Industry is really fun, especially in the recent years.
At the end of the day, I don't think that changing company or changing industry is that much different overall. Breaking the pattern is always brutal for a while no matter how big is the change.
Make sure to bank on the only constant in the equation: YOU!
Mindset and attitude go a long way, even further than knowledge...that you can always acquire.
Be confident and make sure to play up your competitive athlete background!
Good luck with your leap of faith!
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by Sharene MAC 08.03.2017
Marc,
Thanks for your advice and words of encouragement :) I've already taken a few measures to MAKE this transition happen. Fingers crossed for the journey ahead, thanks again!
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Nina Weihrauch
Nina Weihrauch | Editor Sharene 21.03.2017
I cross my fingers for you as well, Sharene.

Keep us posted and take inspiration from sports to business.

High five,

Nina
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