AFL is a team sport where two teams play against each other with the aim of scoring the most goals and points. Teams are made up of individuals with different roles to play, all looking to achieve the same outcome (a win!). If they work well together, the game can often result in a victory. It’s the team’s individual efforts that add up to an overall success. With so many players on a team, the level of coordination and collaboration has to be strong. If one teammate isn’t invested, it can affect the entire team. Just like being a part of a football team, being a part of an office team requires the same kind of collaboration. You’ve got to know who you’re working with, invest in the overall success of the business, and work at performing your role to the best of your ability. As with football, you’ll likely experience high points and low points and need to lean on your team for support and motivation along the way.

Football has some valuable lessons that can be transferred to the workplace as well as your individual ‘player’ mentality:

Be accountable

When you’re a part of a team, your work isn’t just for you. You work hard and show up for your teammates, even on the days when you might not feel as inspired. Your success is shared with your team, and you feel a responsibility to the group as a whole to do your part. A work team is much the same- when you put in your fair share of work, take responsibility and accountability for your actions, you are contributing towards your team success.

Set goals

Without an aim or vision for what you are working towards, there is often no reason to train or no purpose behind your work. With clear goals and a strategy in place, you will be able to focus on your efforts and work towards them along with the others in your team who are striving to reach the same goals or that ‘win’.

Learn from failure

Football teaches us to grow from mistakes and to bounce back from failure as a team. Even great football teams know the feeling of occasional failure. It’s never fun to lose, but a good team doesn’t let a loss keep them down. With any defeat, a team can observe what went wrong and try to change their strategies for the next game. People at work can learn to find lessons in failure in the same way. It’s always good to take time to reflect, discuss and brainstorm ways to ensure any mistake or failure (large or small) can be avoided in future.

Keep your spirit up

Team spirit is one of those intangible qualities that’s nearly impossible to talk about or pick out, however, without it, a team often looks like they are missing ‘something’. Cheering your teammates on can demonstrate your capacity for encouraging your colleagues and your good spirit. Celebrating wins is also important, so make sure you take the time to acknowledge success on and off the pitch for yourself and your team.