The period between two Olympic Games is short enough to experience different, world-class locations and long enough to keep a track of how your career progresses.
I had a pleasure of working at London 2012 and several major sport championships, including Belgrade 2009 Universiade as a fresh college graduate, full of aspirations for an international career. Four years later, before Rio 2016 dozen young people approached me to receive tips about crowdfunding for their studies as well as about working and living in Brazil during the biggest event on our planet.
These conversations showed me again that encouraging others is one of the most uplifting feelings in the world. Wth that very intention I created this text for all of you, so let's roll.
Working at Olympic Games can be a fantastic choice for all of you for several reasons:
1) You use communication and interpersonal skills in an extraordinary setting.
Depending on your sector, and the country or sport you represent, you are in the role of an diplomat, liaison, negotiator, assistant. The roles are demanding and no two days are the same. An extra perk is that you can do it in several foreign languages, while you break up the relationship with any stereotypes, if you had them in the first place.
2) You experience a foreign country from locals' perspective.
Because you live and contribute in the country during one of the most widely acclaimed events in the world, you seize to be a tourist. Your effort, smile and knowledge contribute on a daily basis to the event's success, plus you get to interact with proud locals interested to show even more beauty of their country and forge friendships.
3) Your get lifetime memories and the unique CV bullet point.
After I returned home from Olympic Games, all my camera photos got accidentally erased. The lesson learned was not to allow a family member to use a camera card in a dictaphone without asking for a permission.
But this very issue taught me a valuable lesson: no matter how many photos we store on our social media accounts and no matter how much we long for that perfect shot, the most amazing experiences remain in our head and heart.
In the same way, as it happened with photos, I learned not to have a strong attachment to my achievements. Yes, the very fact that I went through the rigorous selection among thousands of interested peers and that I eventually worked at Olympic Games enhanced my CV and enabled me to continue working on amazing career projects.
Still, Olympic Games did not bring entitlement to me that I deserve more, they taught me to contribute more to improving lives of others and to start exercising regularly.
Now that countries count down how many medals they won and greet their athletes on the balcony, you may think about various ways to contribute to next Olympic Games be that 2018 Pyeongchang, South Korea or 2020 Tokyo, Japan.
You can engage in this more sustainable and technologically stimulating future of Olympic Games movement asYou Take Part In The Massive Shift Of Olympic Games Experience.
You can continue building your skills and network so that you can contribute to next Olympic Games:
1) Create a project for The National Olympic Committee in your homeland.
In my experience, people inspired to work at Olympic Games can communicate well in the international context and they liaise wonderfully between their country of origin and countries whose language they speak.
Your first step towards working at next Olympic Games should be to inform yourself about the projects that your National Olympic Committee creates.
Why don't you take part in some of those actions or create the innovative projects with your own signature style? You do want to encourage more tangible actions in the field of youth, sport, healthy lifestyle, cultural diplomacy, and SDGs. Why not start locally: from your own city and country?
2) Share your knowledge at international youth or sport events.
When I got accepted to work at London 2012 it felt almost as if every step I took until then had led me to accomplishing the biggest project in my career until then. And it works like that in any career path we pursue: one success leads to another one and even if we fail or reach the plateau it is a foundation to something new.
Why don’t you figure out what is your favourite winter or summer sport and contribute to its success at the next European, African or World Championship? If you are into University sports, you can take part at next Universiades as a volunteer.
If your strengths lie in event management or teaching, you can participate in summer events or specialized conferences. Help people get better skills through sport and active living. The great source of information about projects on the European and international level is ENGSO Youthwhere our colleague Nevena Vukasinovic mobilized international team incredibly. You can do the same as you start from your own country and continent.
3) Figure out the costs you need to cover and the value you can provide.
Lack of resources, especially the financial ones should not be an obstacle for you to make your dream come true.
Figure out even now what the costs you would need to cover in order to travel to the biggest sport event on the planet in two, four or six years.
When a dear friend was supposed to go to Brazil during Rio 2016 for a summer school and university program (not the actual work at the games), one of the options we figured out in a conversation was to work part-time in a hostel and to get an accommodation for free.
Try out different scenarios yourself . This ultimate list by colleague Jovana Miljanovic will help you start travelling the world for free.
4) Apply on the official websites to volunteer or work during Olympic Games.
Now your story goes like this: you have collected substaintial international experience and events in neighbouring countries do count. It is time to go to the official websites and apply for Olympic Games.
For example, during London 2012 Games I did not take days off so as to work at Russia Sochi Park in Kensington Gardenrs which I described on the website of dearCambridge University Russian Society.
When you submit your application form be as specific as possible in elaborating on your achievements: What was your contribution and in which sector? How big was the team you led?If you increased the visibility of the organization, was it by x number of press releases, social media posts or something similar? And of course be genuine as you are stating your accomplishments. Just because we live in the age when we manage our reputation through online channels, there’s no reason to make our achievements bigger than they actually are.
5) In between sport events, live the values of Olympism every day.
We are what we do on repeat. The more international experience you get, the richer you become. Olympic Games taught me to implement the habits of top athletes in my professional ethics and fitness regime. I saw how it is when you win and when you get defeated. And because I could relate to the teams I helped, I actually experienced those things as if I was the one fighting on the court.
From 2010 I have been exercising quite regularly and last two years with almost ‘‘religious’’ discipline, which equipped me with strategies of excellence in other areas of my life: my career, relationships and contribution to community.
Do not forget to write here how your progress goes. I am excited to hear in what ways this text guided you towards the better version of yourself. Good luck!
Milena’s current projects focus onhelping companies and Millennials in the 4th Industrial Revolutionthrough three streams: business development in ICT sector, international education and event management.