#6 Christian Wassmer: CEO of Betheone Sports, former UTA tennis coach talks about college tennis, coaching, fitness, confidence, rest and recovery, sports mindset, ethics, and sportsmanship
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Today's discussion is with my former UTA tennis coach, Christian Wassmer. I had so much fun speaking and re-connecting with Christian that we ended up running over our reserved time, and I still had many questions left.
Christian and I talk a lot about tennis, our college tennis journeys, and different coaching styles - things we could have done better and things we have implemented to maximize our athletic potential. We dive into sports mindset, confidence, the importance of goal setting, injuries, sports in general, ethics in sports, anti-doping, and the meaning of sportsmanship. We also discuss creative problem solving, teamwork, collaboration, commitment, and cultural awareness needed when organizing Olympics, as Christian worked for the International Olympic Committee.
Christian and I dive into all parts of his journey and career change decisions. I find Christian's journey fascinating, and I am amazed how he has been able to make career choices that aligned with his passion and talents and, at the same time, pushed him to learn more and grow. What also stood out to me were his transitions. The way I hear Christian narrate his journey, it appears that he has a strong sense of inner wisdom where at specific points of time, he has decided to slow down, or outside circumstances forced him to slow down and re-examine his passion, growth, and what he wants to put his energy into next.
Christian Wassmer is currently the CEO of betheone-sports in Germany, where he does sports consulting and management with different clients. His primary operations focus is on institutional consultancy, including governance, strategic planning, development, project management, and GAISF/IOC recognition.
Link to a story that Christian shares in the latter part of the podcast from Wall Street Journal on how they saved the Men's Alpine Skiing Olympic Championship in Sochi, Russia is here.
Additionally, Christian lectures International Sports, Intercultural Communication, and Sports Law at the Berlin Steinbeis University Bodensee-Campus.
Some of my favorite quotes from this episode:
On navigating career changes:
"You are happy. You are successful. Do you really want to move forward? Ask yourself: Do you really want to do something different?"
On the importance of focus and goal setting:
"The key ingredient is to focus on the next step. The next step allows us to focus on the goals. Setting goals is super important. But to set realistic goals is almost equally important. If you set the goal too high, it is good because you will improve, but sometimes you might not know where you're going. If the path in front of you is not laid out properly, it might be difficult to achieve the big goal or to make a change. Now, with the next step approach, with smaller steps that are achievable, people are more likely to succeed."
About tennis, coach & player fit, style of coaching:
"This is why tennis is such a fascinating sport because you can become successful with so many different ways of coaching and playing. It just seemed that this style of coaching and focus on my strengths fit me better than trying to improve my weaknesses."
On transferring to a different university:
"Something wasn't right for me in the environment. I didn't feel 100% comfortable."