Wednesday, May 15, 2013

Cycling ≠ Golf

We've all experienced work environments where the only way to socialize with your boss, upper management, and vendors is on the golf course. Deals and careers are made and broken on the golf course and if you don't golf you're not one of the boys. Worry no more according to a recent article “Cycling is the new golf. A non-completive environment where it’s all about camaraderie. BULL!

On the golf course you spend most of your time walking or driving along the course giving you plenty of time to socialize. Since the actual golf part takes very little time,  your biggest concern is making sure your boss wins and by how much. In “Cycling is the new golf” there is a claim that “Many believe cycling is better than golf for building lasting working relationships, or landing a new job, because it is less competitive.” On the other hand a contradictory statement is made that counters this; “. “A younger rider can be cycling along with a chief executive and take their wind or help them in some way and you get a reversal of the relationship.” So just like letting your boss win in golf will help your career, letting your boss draft off of you so he doesn't have to pedal as hard may benefit your career. Gee, sounds just like letting your boss win at golf.

I'm glad that there are some executives who have found a way to combine their love of cycling and turn it into a networking opportunity. But the author is using some isolated cases of a few cyclists who are interconnected through an existing business relationship and a high profile charity ride. One commenter summed it up very succinctly; “I would love nothing more than for cycling to be the new "it" sport among executives. However, unlike golf, cycling requires a person to be relatively fit just to be able to have conversations during a typical training ride. That is, you have to work really hard just to be mediocre. Additionally, as most executives are highly competitive, most "group rides" among executives ultimately devolve into a testosterone-fueled hammer-fest.”

If cycling is the new golf, then I'm taking up Chess Boxing.

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