Sports Management: 6 Key Aspects Related To The Business And Governance Of Sports

Let us look at six key aspects that are unique and essential to the management and governance of a sports organization.

The world of sports is much more than a recreational activity; it is a culture. Sports have been with us over centuries, touched millions of lives, and have developed into a vital sector of social and economic activity. In today’s world, a sport is not only the centre of entertainment but also a centre of employment, management, and business. To have a smooth run, just like any other good organization, sports also need a good team or a representative managing their events, players, fans, media, regulations, strategies, and budgets. This accumulative activity is called Sports Management.

Be it a small sports club or a global event, every sport event needs proper planning and execution. A sports management team needs to engage in strategic planning, manage large numbers of human resource activities, deal with broadcasting contracts, supervise financial decisions and budgets, liaise with highly integrated global networks of international sports federations, national sport organizations, government agencies, media corporations, sponsors and community organizations. These activities, when done in a timely and efficient manner constitute the governance of sports. Let us look at six such key aspects that are unique and essential to the management and governance of a sports organization:

The Board and Organizational Culture: This culture refers to the team value, performance, commitment, efficiency, and decision-making capability of each employee belonging to the respective sports organization. The organizational culture directly impacts the reputation of the organization and the practices they preach. The board is an elective member group selected out of the competent employees and stakeholders, who then maintains a code of conduct within the organization and handles crucial management decisions. Organizational culture influences how we see the sport and the people involved with it.

Strategic Management: The sports manager is responsible for analyzing and identifying the organization’s or the team’s position in the competitive market outside. Understanding the sport and its market, strategy planning, allocating resources, determining goals, finding business opportunities, are some of the basic principles that lead to the success of a sports organization. Understanding the environment that directly or indirectly influences a particular sport is a significant skill to possess. The quality of strategy management done by a sports manager or management team determines their success in the industry.

Performance Management: The productivity and the efficiency of the team depends upon the human resource activity a sports manager performs to ensure exceptional performance management. Regular evaluation and introduction of the right stakeholders like players/athletes, managers, owners, coaches, leagues, clubs, supporters, agents, match officials, and their utilization are some of the major factors affecting how the sport functions. A supportive and motivated team goes a long way and hence they need to be aligned with the objective and vision of the sports body.

Marketing and Communication: Be it the spokesperson for the team or the public relations personnel, a sports manager has to put their best foot forward when it comes to marketing and promotional activity regarding the club or team. Coordinating with the media houses, brands, sponsors, endorsers and other bodies involved has been a major area to develop the sport or the organization. From arranging fundraisers to media conferences, from product advertisements to announcement parties, every aspect of communication with the audience affects the reputation of the sport and the body involved.

Financial Management: Each sports organization has a unique revenue and expense system. The planning and execution of the budget, the calculation of potential revenue to operational expenses, and allocating a budget to each category is a major responsibility. The manager needs to know about membership income, ticketing and merchandise sales, sports betting income, sponsorship, broadcast rights fees, government grants, and subsidies, salaries of the staff, emergencies when it comes to managing the financial decision-making process of a sports venture.

Legal Understanding and Governance: Each sport has its own set of regulations and policies that need to be taken into consideration when participating in an event or playing the sport. To understand the legal requirements, disciplinary framework, and code of ethics and to ensure that they are followed is a must. Not adhering to rules and not having accurate policies might lead to negative publicity and also loss of reputation for an organization or sports person and hence the right guidance is very important. To reduce exposure to legal risk factors, identifying and listing out the laws and the court system the sports industry must adhere to and monitor the practice of the appropriate rules and regulations that contribute to a good governance system.

Disclaimer: The views expressed in the article above are those of the authors' and do not necessarily represent or reflect the views of this publishing house

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