4 Things Gretzky Can Teach You About Marketing

You might be racking up the small victories, but are you landing the big wins? Are you making amazing things happen? Maybe you need to be more like Wayne Gretzky.

For those who don’t know, Wayne Gretzky is the greatest hockey player who ever lived. Any marketer can learn a lot from how he conducted business and how he made big plays.

Here are four simple things you can learn from “the great one.”

Gretzky Skated To Where The Puck Was Going, Not Where It Had Been

Wayne wasn’t the fastest skater or toughest guy on the ice. But from age two, he practiced hockey with this sage advice from his father, Walter Gretzky:

“Skate to where the puck is going, not where it has been.”

16 years later, he was dominating the National Hockey League. That’s because the opportunity to do something great is always where “the puck is going.” That’s where he went. If you hear hockey players talk about Gretzky, they always mention his ability to anticipate that puck.

I heard a great story about a Principal who held a weekly meeting and asked, “What did we learn about this week that could put us out of business?” That’s a great example of thinking about where the puck is going.

Wayne Gretzky Cared About Making His Teammates Better

When Wayne was a kid, he used to lay out all his hockey gear before a game. One day, Wayne said to his father,” there’s a kid on our team that hasn’t scored a goal all year. Today, I’m gonna help him score a goal.” That boy scored two goals that day, thanks to Wayne.

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Gretzky Helped More Than He Scored

During his career, Gretzky scored a record 894 goals. He was the best scorer to ever play the game. This is a guy who could basically skate up to the net and score a goal whenever he wanted.

But his assist record is more impressive, 1,963 assists. That means for every goal he scored, he helped two other people score goals. He gave twice as much as he got. That’s impressive!

In marketing, the more you help others, the more you’ll get in return. So, help everybody every day.

Wayne Didn’t Worry About Lack Of Resources; He Had Resourcefulness

During his years with the Oilers, the team conducted individual strength and stamina tests twice per year. According to Gretzky himself, he always finished dead last in peripheral vision, flexibility, and strength, and could only bench press 140 pounds.

Instead of relying on his athleticism, he used creativity and intelligence to avoid players trying to check him, anticipate where the puck was going, and make big things happen.

Don’t complain about a lack of resources. Instead, be resourceful.

Is there a sports figure that inspires your work life? Be sure to leave a comment below.

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