He suggested to have fun

Paris, May 2011, average of 26°C for the past week, plenty of tourists looking lost at the Champ de Mars metro station: I help them, in English, Spanish and sometimes French, and it amuses me. I am home, working, living, breathing and walking, or using public transports, from one meeting to another.

I am building new references, and reconnecting with old ones, taking the pulse on the local sport events business, its operational side, its logistical memories. Not one nightmare, really. Stressful, yes, unbearable, no.

There is no name-dropping, only a series of past stories and upcoming projects unfolding before my eyes and my ears: that sounds exciting, complicated at times, and definitely promising (and “inspiring” too). I am not shocked by the enthusiasm I read in my counterpart’s eyes. Because, yes, there is something there, some passion that cannot fall under any category: it has gone beyond passion, it is more a way of living. Since my peers work in Sport, it somehow sounds like they are playing too. Do not get me wrong though: the game is about taking, and mitigating the risks of any project. Nothing to do with gambling, it is about gauging what makes sense based on personal, professional and company’s competences. Control the jumping part to master the landing: it takes practices and guts.

I see a smile, get a sense of confidence and audacity without insolence. I feel a desire to grow, without necessarily going bigger, choosing the right battles which turn out to be more of a journey than a drifting trip. My meetings boost me: the stimulation comes from the addiction to sport events (in the planning and operational phases), and how it can be compared to a drug (where any medical intervention is considered trivial), and cessation or withdrawal are futile. I remember having been warned after my Olympic experience: dipping your toes into it may suck you in, for good. I am happy to have stuck my fingers into the door and get drawn into that kind of whirlpool.

The meetings touch on the interest we have in being involved and part of that very industry. And there it is: “we do it because it is fun, and we decline contracts when we smell too many headaches!” A luxury? Not exactly, just a different business plan which combines expertise, pleasure and commitment. The willingness to do business with a boutique style allows for more flexibility, and follows the choice to have fun. The way this particular company functions is evidently a bit different, and shows intrinsic motivation. And it surpasses the idea to seduce some GenX or GenY people: the concept is inviting, understanding fun can be shared, and decided upon.