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Here to Create

Basketball is all about staying one step ahead.

In a sport where agility is everything, it’s not enough to just be physical. You’ve got to think quicker and react smarter than your opponent. The right decision, made at the right time, can make all the difference.

When working in digital, the same principles hold true. I apply the skills that I developed on court to almost every aspect of my strategic thinking.

To me, everyday is gameday. And when the buzzer goes, this is what we set out to do:

1. Anticipate the play

One of the best ways to break down a defence is to create a successful diversion. But to do this, you need to understand how people react. This is the essence of my role at adidas.

My team has to attract as much organic traffic as possible from search engines to the website and app. By putting ourselves in the mind of the customer, we are better placed to understand the challenges they face across all stages of the consumer journey. This enables us to predict any problems they might encounter and apply solutions to ensure their needs are met.

A man working behind a PC screen at adidas. HereToCreate, Digital, adidas employee, Basketball, teamwork, leadership, strategy
Back at my desk I slip into the shoes of the consumer and take their journey to understand how to make it better.

2. Trust the game plan

Man playing basketball against mouse cursors. adidas, HereToCreate, Basketball, adidas employee, Digital, IT, Analytics, teamwork, mindset, strategy
Digital marketing is so new with many paths to follow.

Sometimes defence is so good that you just can’t find a way through, so what do you do? Give up? Or get creative?

When I started out in digital marketing, everything was completely new, so there were no real rules as to how things should be done. This forced me and my team to think outside the box in the way we approached challenges, which is how we’ve kept things ever since.

You see, it’s one thing to have data at your disposal. It’s another thing to make sense of it. We try to tell stories through the information we gather. Sometimes, these aren’t obvious at first. So we have to use our imagination to come up with the answer. Obviously we’ll make mistakes along the way. But by staying positive and trusting each other to learn and develop, we get there in the end.

3. Create on the fly

Employees brainstorming ideas during a meeting in a modern office environment. HereToCreate, adidas, teamwork, basketball, digital, leadership, strategy
I’m always ready to pass the ball to my teammates to see what they create with it.

Of course, it’s not always an easy thing to determine. So we set prospective employees broad tasks to see how they react. It’s the equivalent of just giving someone the ball and seeing what they’ve got.

If they’ve got that ability to adapt, be flexible and spot the opportunity in every challenge, I know they’ll have what it takes to succeed.

How do you inspire your team to think creatively? Share your advice with us in the comments below.


Do you want to change the rules with your imagination? Do you want to hack the future?

Join Team adidas


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