The Rugby Business Network Podcast

This global network was set up in 2010 with a vision of building a community that connects rugby, business and charity. Today our network has more than 38,000 members attending our events in more than 60 cities around the world, helping and inspiring each other.

Over the last seven years we have built what has now become the world’s biggest and most influential network for senior business people with a passion for rugby. It is now time that we extend this opportunity beyond our organisers and members so that the whole world can benefit from these motivational stories, experiences and advice.

We bring you The Rugby Business Network Podcast.


A lesson on becoming a “Go-Giver”

International Bestselling Co-author of “The Go-Giver”, Bob Burg explains that he fell into business, having started out in broadcasting and then moving into sales. In 2008 a little story about a powerful business idea took the business world by storm, when along with John David Mann, Bob co-wrote “The Go-Giver”.  He speaks about where the idea for the book came from, which has since gone on to become a national best seller, translated into over 20 languages and has more than 650,000 copies sold worldwide.

Central to “The Go-Giver” is the five Laws of Stratospheric Success – Values, Compensation, Influence, Authenticity and Receptivity – which when used together is able to shift a person’s focus from receiving to giving. Bob elaborates on each of the Laws and admits that the final Law of Receptivity is the one businesspeople often struggle to implement and Bob details why this is the case.  Bob clarifies that being a Go-Giver in one’s personal life or in business means to constantly give value to others and not necessarily giving away money and being taken advantage of.

Following the huge success of “The Go-Giver”, two more books were published called “Go-Givers Sell More” and “The Go-Giver Leader”, which Bob says were not in the pipe-line when the first book was printed and were written as a result of public demand.  In 2018 Bob’s next book titled “The Go-Giver Influencer” will be coming out and he touches on the topic of influence which is explored in this business parable.  Bob mentions the most common questions he gets asked by businesses when he is a keynote speaker at company leadership and sales conferences.  Bob also talks about encountering businesspeople who are “Go-Takers” that are successful, however that success is limited and unsustainable.

The principles and five laws of “The Go-Giver” can also be implemented by professional Rugby and sports teams Bob insists, as it is not only in the business environment where giving brings with it success.  Through the series of books and the talks conducted by Bob, he has offered so much valuable advice to the readers and audience members over the years, although he has also received value words of wisdom and he tells that story and the impact it had on his business career.

A Life after Rugby is not only difficult to accept for professional players

Former General Manager of Communications at the South African Rugby Union, Anthony Mackaiser speaks about his career as a qualified journalist in the sports industry and the journey which led him to an incredible opportunity in 1997 to work at SARU.  Anthony went on to manage the strategic communications and media for the Springboks and mentions the infectious environment he experienced filled with thrills, but also back stabbing. Anthony explains that even though he was not an actual player for the Springboks, he still felt the emotions the players did after winning or losing a test.

Being the South African national Rugby team’s media liaison, Anthony was privy to some private information within the union and on occasion when it was leaked to the media, it made his job difficult and this he says was one of the frustrations that came with his role.  Anthony reflects on how he went from working with SARU and the Springboks, to becoming Communications and Marketing Manager at SANZAR. His time however at the organisation lasted just a year and was forced to move away for personal reasons.  He admits that leaving SANZAR is a big regret he still holds and discusses how since then, sport disappeared from him life altogether and that for six months he was unemployed.

Anthony however has accepted his new career in the field of education, as he is Manager of Corporate Events and Protocol at Curtin University in Perth.  Sport to a small degree returned to Anthony’s life in 2017 when he took up the position of Marketing and Sales Consultant at the HeadSmart Sports Concussion Programme.  Anthony says the biggest lessons he has learnt from his own transition away from top Rugby organisations is the necessity of having an entrepreneurial spirit and growing networks to make life after Rugby easier to cope with.  However, Anthony has not given up on returning to Rugby and indicates that he would relish working at Super Rugby franchise, the Brumbies in the future.

Nurturing relationships with sponsors to keep Rugby moving forward

Premiership Rugby Chief Executive Officer, Mark McCafferty says working at Midlands Bank, Thomas Cook Group and Avis previously, helped prepare him for his role at the English professional Rugby union competition when he came on board in 2005. Mark highlights what attracted him to the position at Premiership Rugby and the challenges that come with running the business side of Rugby, when most of the attention is geared towards the performance of players and clubs.

Mark speaks about the set of values the organisation adheres to, namely being professional excellence and having a personal touch. These values tie into how Mark and his team formulate and nurture the relationships they have formed with stakeholders and investors in Premiership Rugby.  Sponsors of Rugby clubs and organisations do not have a natural life span in the sport according to Mark, who explains that Premiership Rugby has had longstanding relationships with some of their commercial partners and the importance of refreshing the partnership to sustain it for as long as possible. Mark says from the perspective of businesses supporting the Rugby community, the values the sport possess and the growth element that exists in the game makes it attractive to investors.

HITZ is Premiership Rugby’s award-winning education and employability programme which currently works with over 2,000 teenagers across England every year.  Mark details when the charity was formed, what they are able to achieve using the power of Rugby and the charity’s incredible growth with over 12,000 teenagers helped in the last eight years.  Mark also mentions the importance of organisations like The Rugby Business Network existing and offering their support to the Rugby community.

Mark talks about how he takes time away from his demanding schedule to keep physically fit in order to remain mentally sharp and the importance of stepping back every once in a while from a 24 hour industry like Rugby to recharge.  Mark concludes by saying that in Rugby there are a large number of stakeholders, unlike conventional businesses, and with that comes many lessons to be learnt from building a consensus with each individual entity in the sport.

Charity gives heroes a second chance in life

Recovery Director at Help for Heroes, retired Colonel David Richmond discusses his role at the UK military charity, which empowers injured veterans to achieve their full potential. He also mentions how he trains and manages the UK Invictus Games Team.

David served in the British Army for 26 years, which included stints with inventory units in Bosnia and Iraq, as well as being the highest ranked British officer in Afghanistan as a Lieutenant Colonel.  He insists that he enjoyed all his years in the Army and has no regrets, despite being shot in the leg and undergoing a number of surgeries four years after the ordeal to regain the 10 centimeters of bone he lost in his right femur. Having been able to save his leg and the intensive rehabilitation which followed at Headley Court, David received a CBE in the Queen’s New Year’s Honours List in 2012 and says it’s an award he is proud of and dedicates it to his family, who had to endure the lengthy recovery process with him.

As a retired Colonel, David talks about the leadership qualities that he learnt in the Army and how that can be transferred to professional Rugby players.  David also highlights why Help for Heroes uses Rugby to raise awareness about the charity and to generate funds.  Help for Heroes is a charity partner of The Rugby Business Network and David speaks about how this relationship was formed and the networking opportunities that exist in assisting injured servicemen and women when looking for careers in business after their years in the Military.

David lists the various fundraising initiatives set up for Rugby fanatics and businesses to get involved with to show their support for the charity.  With the Help for Heroes funded facilities at Headley Court being transferred to a bigger, newer, purpose-built facility at Stanford Hall in Leicestershire in 2018, David says this move will not affect the work he does and is looking forward to the many more wounded veterans that can be supported.



Go up