The sports sector is becoming a major opportunity for entrepreneurs to develop their entrepreneurship skills. Sports arena and stadiums have offered the business community a chance to develop sustainable business opportunities. Growth in sporting activities, technology advances, and the globalization effect has tremendously changed the sports sector in a way that it is recognized as one of the most income generating projects for the private, public and voluntary sector. There has been massive investment in the sporting industry and as a result, the participation in the sports sector and the level of employment in the industry has been on a tremendous rise (Girginov, 2008). The world’s population is gradually becoming appreciative of the role of sports in the community and hence the trend is likely to continue in future. Most of these sports enterprises are concerned with the economic and social activities. There are also different environments within which the enterprises thrive. In this paper, we will discuss at length the interrelated and integrated nature of sports development enterprise within the commercial, public and voluntary sectors.
The commercial sector
As aforementioned, the sports industry is becoming commercialized every day. There are large profits that entrepreneurs view in the area and as a result, there are huge numbers of entrepreneurs who are attracted to venture in this business. Increased commercialization of sports has consequently led to significant growth in the sporting goods industry. Moist entrepreneurs have engaged in the manufacturing of sporting goods that are commonly used in sporting activities. Athletic footwear, apparels, sporting products and equipment and accessory items are some of the most manufactured goods. Organizations are manufacturing sporting gloves, playing kits and protective equipment that players need for their plays are the sports products mostly manufactured by players in the sports industry.
For instance in the United States, the manufacturers of the sporting goods have an annual turnover of over $170 billion. The manufacturing sector of the sporting goods can, therefore, be considered among the top players in the United States’ economy. It is also worth noting that these products are made by the several people working in these manufacturing factories thus forming a good source of employment opportunities (Robson, Simpson and Tucker, 2013). With the increasing levels of globalization, there is a high likelihood that such manufacturing plants will be established in several other parts of the world thus increasing the contribution of the sports sector to the world economy. The evolution of commercial sports is the basis upon which these manufacturing companies are formed.
The rise of the manufacturing of sports goods has been increasing every day for the last two centuries. In recent times, the sporting merchandise is produced in masses as the sporting activities increase and as the community appreciates the role of sport in the economy. The number of employees in the sports sector has also substantially increased over the years. As the level of technology continues evolving, the production of these products has also significantly changed with time. The production of these sporting goods requires machinery and other technology, unlike in the past where simple tools and hand labor were used in the production. There has been continuous inventions and mechanized manufacturing as a result of increased commercialization of the sports sector (Girginov, 2008). The emergence of industrial revolution came with added advantage of assemblers of this machinery and inventions also gained a lot from the booming sports business. These technologies have been significant in the UK, United States and other parts of Europe.
The level of competition within the manufacturing sector has been intensifying every year. Also, the level of industrialization and technology advances has also been on the rise especially in the 21st century. The combination these factors have resulted in the exploitation of workers through harsh working conditions and lower wages. The manufacturers are in need of profit maximization and the stiff competition in the sector has resulted in poor working conditions for the employees in this sector. It is, however, imperative noting that the exploitation of the employees brought about serious conflicts in the working place. Nevertheless, the profitability of the manufacturing sector has been sustainable over the years, and more and more manufacturers are always engaging in the commercial sports sector.
It is also wise understanding that the globalization effect has also had significant influence in the manufacturing sector of the sports enterprise. Various political and legal implications affect businesses especially that work across different countries. Impacts of war and other political instabilities in different countries have greatly affected the manufacturing sector. Just like the other enterprises, there booms and recessions that affect the manufacturing sector. Nevertheless, the ever-increasing awareness and appreciation of the sports industry by the community have brought sustainability in the sports commerce. It is nevertheless imperative understanding that different countries have different impacts on the manufacturing business (Robson, Simpson and Tucker, 2013). For instance, the United States has always been the leading manufacturer of sports goods.
In the last few years, the sports industry has experienced major developments that have resulted in the enhanced performance of sports commerce. The past few years have recorded increased public participation in sporting activities both as players and also as spectators. There has been also increased professionalization of major sports thus increasing the need for renowned corporate entities that promote the sporting activities. It is prudent noting that the number of professional participants across the different sporting activities has been on the rise in the recent years. The increase in a number of professional players and public participation in the sporting activities have brought about increased entrepreneurial activities in the sporting sector. Manufacturing of sports goods and construction of facilities have tremendously increased, and this has been a plus to the global economy. Participants in these sporting activities have realized the importance of using the appropriate apparel, footwear, and other equipment while participating in sports activities. There has also been increased awareness of lifestyle diseases and as a result increased public participation in sporting activities thus reducing instances of such diseases. On this note, construction of sporting facilities and manufacturing of sporting goods have been at the peak in the last few years. The trend is likely to continue as more and more participants engage in the sporting activities.
The public sector
As aforementioned, the sporting industry is becoming increasingly important in the modern society. Despite the major economic contribution of the sports industry, the sector also has other significant contribution to the public sector. Many people and different public organizations have continually used sports for sustainable development and other important issues of public importance. It is imperative noting that the word is experiencing increased public participation in the sports sector. With this in mind, many people and organizations in public leadership have identified the role of citizenship and inclusion that comes along with sports. Most are the times when individuals and communities come together irrespective of their cultural and ethnic differences (Girginov, 2008). Such instances are important since there are chances for increased cohesion and bridging of pre-existing ethnic and cultural divides.
Also, sports, have also been identified as a major source of essential knowledge and skills that are paramount for public development. It is argued that sports provide forum where individuals acquire skills such as confidence, discipline, and leadership. It also offers a platform where one can acquire principles such as respect, tolerance, and co-operation all of which are critical for sustained peace and co-existence. Sports involve competition where there are always victors as well as losers (Li, MacIntosh and Bravo, 2012). This offers a great experience where people can learn the value of effort and how to manage victories and defeats. The general public is always in a competitive world regarding business and political scenes, and it is always vital to be equipped with these essential traits. When one realizes the presence of these traits in sports, then it is inevitable to use sports as a vehicle for the development of the public sector.
For instance, the human health is of major concern to the public. With this respect, it has been noted that increased participation in sports activity has some health benefits. Sports are physical in nature and it is argued that such physical activities can help reduce deaths resulting from noncommunicable diseases and other lifestyle diseases such as cancer, depression, and diabetes. Such physical activities help control body weight and also reduce hypertension. It is in this respect that the public must be sensitized to the importance of increase participation in sporting activities. Sports are even of greater importance among the young as it helps in the development of stronger bones. It has therefore become increasingly important to use sports as a means to improve public health and consequently realize large economic benefits. A health population will lead to increased productivity and hence lead to greater economic output (Robson, Simpson and Tucker, 2013). Most public organizations have therefore been using sports to promote health standards among the general public.
It is also imperative noting that there is a direct relationship between sports and peace. As earlier mentioned, Sports bring together people from different ethnic and cultural backgrounds. It has therefore become a norm for the agents of peace to bring together antagonistic groups during sports. In the past, people have settled their differences in sports and lived happier lives after that. The increased popularity of the sports sector offers a powerful voice for communicating messages of peace at both local and international stage (Li, MacIntosh and Bravo, 2012). Sports offer essential skills and values that promote peaceful co-existence. Sporting activities offer the public with an opportunity to learn essential values such as honesty, respect, communication, empathy, communication and the need for adhering to the rules. Individuals who hold such virtues can be able to have a peaceful co-existence with their neighbors.
Sports are also known to lead to the development of other important aspects essential for human development. For instance, some of the essential traits resulting from sporting activities can be very useful for improving the capacity of the labor force. The value of efforts and being a team player are some of the notable attributes that can lead to improved output from a workforce. Besides, sports lead to the construction of infrastructures to enable the public participation. Besides the economic benefits resulting from the construction work, these facilities can be used for other purposes such as schools, and venues for the public, social and cultural activities (Girginov, 2008). There is also a high likelihood that essential amenities such as water, electricity and well-maintained roads will also be available in such locations.
It is also prudent noting that there is also the major impact of sports and the environment. It is argued that most sporting activities have a significant impact on the environment that is of paramount importance to the public. Habitat loss, erosion, and pollution are the major impacts that are brought about by the sporting activities. Nevertheless, environment crusaders are using sporting activities to spread the news on the importance of having a sustainable environment. Sports arenas and stadiums have therefore been important venues where powerful environmental messages are delivered. On this note, it is prudent indicating that spot offers one of the most powerful communication tools. This is because of its universal nature and offers a platform through which a message can get to a large number of people within the shortest time. It also provides a variety through which a message can be conveyed to a group that would otherwise be difficult to get (Li, MacIntosh and Bravo, 2012). As a result, sports have had a direct relationship with media where most media houses have made enormous profits through adverts during live coverage of such events.
The Volunteer sector
Sports and volunteers are also directly correlated. Most sporting events rely on volunteers and also offer opportunities for volunteers to fulfill their different roles. The volunteers involved in sports activities can also be easily absorbed in other activities of social importance. With the increased popularity of sports, it is only wise to encourage more volunteers to participate in volunteering activities for the overall welfare of the community. It is, even more, important if it is encouraged among the young people in the community who have more energy. Besides the social benefits resulting from the volunteers work, the individuals also benefit from skill acquisition, self-fulfillment, social integration and increased understanding. On the other hand, the community benefits from economic growth, social welfare, and community integration just to mention a few. In essence, sports have been a platform for volunteerism that is responsible for social cohesion and stability (Girginov, 2008). In some countries, it has been noted that the contribution made by volunteers to the sport is said to be much more than government funding.
As aforementioned, the sports activities have for a long time been used as a channel for peace promotion and development. Most of these peace initiatives are carried out by volunteer groups. Sports offer platform for such activities that lead to less aggression and increased cohesion, especially among the youths. Several NGOs have been actively involved in war torn areas and promote peace through sports programs. During such activities, the youths are trained how to resolve conflicts peacefully and maintain peaceful co-existence. It is also during such forums that the young people can be motivated and instilled hope to help rebuild character and confidence to meet the life challenges.
Most of the sports events are organized by volunteers. With the increased popularity and public participation in sports, the role of volunteers cannot go unnoticed. Most of these sporting events attract a large number of people. While some attend the events in person, the other follow the proceedings through live media coverage. As a result, there is a platform where public awareness is promoted through public service announcements, publications, halftime shows, banners and linkages on event websites. This offers a marketing platform where information from such sports events can reach to millions of people all over the world (Robson, Simpson and Tucker, 2013). Such a platform provides excellent marketing opportunity as well as a fundraising opportunity where such funds can be used on matters of social importance.
The sports world has been used by volunteers to address the major pandemics facing the community today. Increased public participation in sporting activities makes it a viable avenue for volunteers to continue with their advocacy role of dealing with epidemics that threatens the human survival. For instance, the resurgence of HIV/AIDS in the recent years has been classified as a major threat to life, dignity and the overall well being of the humanity. It is imperative noting that the world’s population with HIV infection is increasing every year, and it is becoming increasingly important for volunteers to be proactive in addressing this thorny issue. Sports have been effectively used to address this problem by volunteers (Li, MacIntosh and Bravo, 2012). Volunteers have taken measures to help mitigate the spread of the virus through the provision of life skills, knowledge, and safe services.
Volunteers have in the past sponsored major sporting events to sensitize the general public on the dangers of HIV/AIDS and the ways to prevent the spreading of the killer disease. During the events, organizers of such events can use the half-time break to give a public address to the players and the spectators as well. Use of banners and other publications can also be of use for the volunteers to pass this essential information. Also, the volunteers can use sports infrastructures such as arenas and stadiums as venues to spread the critical information on transmission and dangers of the killer disease. The sports also give an opportunity for the victims to interact with others who are not infected thus reducing chances of stigma among the infected. The young generation is the one at the biggest risk of contracting the virus (Girginov, 2008). However, it is the same age group that is actively involved in sporting activities and, therefore, gives the volunteers a chance to put the prevention programs.
Besides the social and individual benefits that result from the volunteering activities, the volunteers also form a good basis for resource mobilization. Sports have for long been used as a platform for resource mobilization essential for certain social projects. The sports world offers a chance where volunteers can contribute towards development initiatives in a community. Sports personnel and the private sector come together for a noble course that is of great social significance. Some of the sports professionals have started charity movements that volunteer to help the needy in the society. There are also instances where volunteers organize sports events and the revenues collected from the sale of tickets is used for a societal initiatives such as feeding the orphans and the underprivileged in the society.
In conclusion, the sport has continuously become an integral part of the modern entrepreneurship. The increasing popularity of the sport has made the entrepreneurship need reach its maximum as more people try to catch the benefits of the ever-increasing demand for sports goods and infrastructure. Sports have been a good source of other life skills that has increased its importance beyond the commercial sector to both private and volunteer sector (Li, MacIntosh and Bravo, 2012). The participative nature of the sport has made it possible to realize the many benefits as discussed in this paper. With the current trend in the sports world, it is likely that more benefits will be eminent as more sports emerge, globalization increase and the level of technology increasing as well.
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