At the pinnacle of his rugby sevens career, Philip Burgess won an Olympic silver medal representing Great Britain at Rio 2016. “It was a once-in-a-lifetime experience — I felt so lucky to be there, and it was an unreal sense of achievement,” he said.
However, when he hung up his boots seven years later, at age 32, Burgess struggled. Despite captaining England of the sport and being a prominent leader, he found it initially hard to catch a break in his second career. “The transition from sports to business was hard,” he admitted. “I had spent over a decade building skills and working tirelessly, and had gone from being one of the best players in the rugby sevens [a form of rugby that uses seven players] world to feeling like an overqualified graduate.”
A LinkedIn post, in which Burgess wrote that he was actively looking for opportunities, was spotted by a fellow ex-sportsman working at Salesforce. He contacted Burgess, who in time became an account executive for the software firm. “He and a group of fellow ex-athletes at Salesforce supported me to transition — we have become a community, and it has helped to build the foundation for Athleteforce,” said Burgess.
The full version of this article was first published on DigiDay’s future-of-work platform, WorkLife, in November 2022 – to read the complete piece, please click HERE.