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Leadership / Entrepreneurs

Derek Jeter on What Motivates Him

The Yankee great, Miami Marlins CEO and Players' Tribune founder tells us what pushes him.
Derek Jeter on What Motivates Him
Image credit: Al Bello | Getty Images
- Magazine Contributor
2 min read

This story appears in the January 2018 issue of Entrepreneur. Subscribe »

Athletes make for potent entrepreneurs: Their careers taught them the importance of strong leadership, a sense of mission and, well, success’s rich rewards. Now they’re drawing their own post-player game plans. “Enterprising athletes are building a brand and giving back to communities -- all of which are vitally important to long-term success,” says Dave Meltzer, CEO of Sports 1 Marketing and host of The Playbook podcast. So who’s on top? We weighed tangibles like money earned with game-changing contracts and endorsement deals, as well as intangibles like personal brand building, appetite for risk and the flat-out coolness of their business pursuits. See our list online, and be inspired by these leadership lessons. 

Related: Serena Williams and the 9 Most Successful Entrepreneur Athletes

Here are four motivational tips from Derek Jeter. 

1. Be a connected leader.

“You have to get to know the people you are leading in order to know how to get the most out of them. Beyond that, open and honest communication is paramount. You are not always going to be making the popular decision, but you need to make sure those affected by it understand the reasoning.”

Related: Going for 'the Gold': What Entrepreneurs Can Learn From Athletes

2. Define your own success.

“In business, the focus in competitiveness is not as much on beating the team in the other dugout but in making your venture successful, however you decide to measure success for the endeavor.”

3. Prep matters most.

“Without preparation, there would be no accomplishments. While, yes, I am proud of various accolades, I am most proud of the work I put in day in and day out leading up to those moments.”

Related: How to Harness the Athlete's Mindset for Business Success

4. Compete against yourself.

“There is a degree of personal pride in the amount of work you put in toward achieving your potential. I can’t always expect to be the best at everything, but I don’t ever want to end a day feeling like I didn’t give all I could toward whatever I faced that day.”

The Craziest Plan That Worked: How Richard Rawlings Hustled His Way Into the TV Show 'Fast N' Loud,' Then Used It to Build a Multimillion-Dollar Brand