Lessons from Sports that You Can Apply to Business with Lucas Caneda
In this episode of SaaS-Story in the Making, host Matt Wolach sits down with Lucas Caneda, the global team leader for Uniqorn Incubator – the most significant rural tech incubator accelerator in the world. Lucas is also a professional rugby player that has won multiple championships in his home country, Argentina.
Lucas talks about how he juggles being an athlete and a business leader. He shares knowledge on how you can apply lessons from the sports field to your business, covering all the crucial things a SaaS leader must take note of to thrive on the battlefield.
Podcast: SaaS-Story in the Making
Episode: Episode171, Lessons from Sports that You Can Apply to Business
Host: Matt Wolach, a B2B SaaS sales coach, Entrepreneur, and Investor.
Guest: Lucas Caneda, global team leader for Uniqorn Incubator.
TOP TIPS FROM THIS EPISODE
Develop a Problem-Solving Mentality
Losing is part of both sports and business. It might be inevitable, but Lucas says it’s the mentality that takes you away from adversities. When asked about how he can apply what he learned from sports to business, Lucas says to have a problem-solving mentality. Ask yourself, “What am I going to do to get this problem solved?”, “How am I going to proceed?”, “Something wrong happened; how do I approach this?” and most importantly, “How do I move forward?”
Lucas remarks that you may feel the need to sacrifice, but it’s all about giving all your energy to something you really want to do. You don’t get to the top by luck – it’s the mentality that you’re willing to do whatever it takes to get you up there.
Have Backup Plans
In sports, business, and life in general, having only one plan wouldn’t get you far. It’s always crucial to have Plans B, C, D, or more. “Because you need to be able to adapt. You need to be able to change if something goes wrong, or if something proved not to be working as well as you thought,” says Lucas.
He advises leaders to have a couple of different plans for startups because sometimes, you are not always where you want to be. It might be a good place, somehow, but there is a way to move around it. Play a little bit around it and step outside of the box. Get out of your comfort zone.
Bring Solutions to the Table
Lucas shares one big piece of advice for software leaders who are just getting started: bring solutions. He notes that when your startup adds a new problem to a current issue, that’s actually a bad sign.
As a startup, you need to be bringing solutions to your audience, or else “you are just adding a whole new problem instead of fixing them, and that’s usually going to fail eventually.” To address this, the first thing you need to do is identify a problem and bring your solution.
Go the Extra Mile When Juggling Two Passions
When you love what you do, you’ll never work a day in your life. Lucas, a professional athlete and a business leader, says that it shouldn’t feel like a burden when you love what you do. In this case, his passion includes playing rugby and excelling in his business. That’s why working and training come naturally to him.
When asked about how he juggles both playing in the field of sports and business, Lucas says it’s all about your willingness to go the extra mile. However, he also notes that you don’t need to win every single time. As an individual, an athlete, and a businessperson, what matters more is your eagerness to grow. In sports and business, losing is the last thing you would want to experience, but it helps you improve and be better.
Do More, Be More
When asked about how he went from a rugby career to a SaaS career, Lucas says it’s not always about wanting to win or be the best of both worlds. It all boils down to simply doing something more and becoming more. It’s about having a goal and reaching it. As a rugby player, Lucas committed himself to play professionally, winning championships for Argentina, his home country and even flying to France to pursue a better career. But aside from his passion for sports, he knew deep down he wanted to do more of what he loves.
Lucas is into investing, tech, and business. Before his present career, he had established multiple companies and businesses. Recently, he founded Challenger X, a SaaS company where he is actually “turning small teams into big teams.” The company looks for small, amateur teams that struggle with their branding, and they help them through marketing. Like how he plays in the field and leads the team, Lucas gives more than what he receives from their sponsors regarding media and coverage. This is why his company succeeded in the SaaS field.
Take Things to the Next Level
In sports, you take things to the next level by starting as an amateur and then training to become a professional. The same principle applies to businesses. If you want to take things to the next level, you need to set the structure.
For instance, make sure the market can view your branding as the next level. For startups, try not to look and act like a startup. Present yourself as a professional organization, and people will believe in you. Matt says it’s crucial to show that you know what you are doing and share educational materials with your audience.
[06:56] “It’s always how much more you can do to become better to improve that takes you to the next level.”
[11:57] “When you really love what you do, and when you give all your energy to it because you really wanted it, it feels natural.”
[12:53] “It’s the mentality that you’re willing to do whatever it takes to get you there.”
[14:14] “It’s always crucial to have a plan because you need to be able to adapt; you need to be able to change if something goes wrong.”
[13:36] “You set a goal. You had a specific date and a specific reason for wanting to get there. You set it, and you committed to it.”
[27:45] “You really need to look like the next level. You need to make that show. You have to set up all the right processes. You have to set the structure.”
[28:06] “Don’t look like a startup. Look like a professional product, professional organization, and people will trust you and believe in you.”
To learn more about Lucas Caneda and Uniqorn Incubator, visit https://uniqornincubator.com/.
You can also find Lucas Caneda on LinkedIn at www.linkedin.com/in/lucas-caneda-9a8195141/.
Check out Lucas’ podcast list at https://cxsports.io/podcasts/
For more about how host Matt Wolach helps software companies achieve maximum growth, visit https://mattwolach.com/.
As part of the founding team in his first SaaS product, Matt owned the sales & marketing processes. But he struggled to sell and gain traction for the company. It took years of learning and tweaking before Matt created The Perfect DEAL Process, an innovative yet easy-to-implement method for closing more software deals. To find out more, visit https://mattwolach.com/about-matt