Here in New Jersey we’re counting down the days until the Super Bowl. You’ve probably seen some of the press conferences and media coverage. The players are making the most of their opportunities here and you should be doing the same thing when it comes to the Seahawks and your workplace.
I’ve offered story lines to talk about, and things to talk about outside the game itself, and ways to build business using the Seahawks. Now it’s ways to share your fandom, strike up a conversation and create momentum around your relationships.
- Team Colors. Most corporate environments require professional attire, so wearing a jersey to work is out. But what about incorporating a Seahawks blue shirt or wearing a green tie? Add a touch of the team colors to your wardrobe. You’d be surprised at how many Seahawks fan notice and make a comment.
- Team Gear. If you work in a more relaxed environment or your office participates in Blue Friday then wear your gear. (The Seahawks encourage fans to wear blue every Friday throughout the season to show their support.) Pay attention to colleagues and coworkers who are wearing their jerseys and team gear. A common rooting interest is one of the ways to build camaraderie. Oh, and since April 1, 2013, three of the top 10 NFL jerseys sold belong to Seahawks players. Russell Wilson is #2 behind Peyton Manning. Marshawn Lynch comes in at #6 and Richard Sherman is #10.
- Update the Décor. The Seahawks team hotel looks and feels like Seahawks headquarters. The hotel updated their décor with large photos of the team, and Seahawks signs over the elevators. Even our key cards are customized. In fact, everywhere you go in Manhattan, store windows are filled with Seahawks (and Broncos) gear. You can do the same thing in your office or at your desk.
- Change Your Ringtone. Try a tune that Seahawks fans will immediate associate with the team, like “Bittersweet Symphony” that fills CenturyLink Field during the player introductions. Any fan that hears that ringtone will make a comment and give you a chance to start a conversation.
- Carry a Sports Page. I know it sounds old fashioned, but think of a sports page as a subtle accessory that fits under your arm. Keep the picture side out so that everyone can see you’re reading up on the Seahawks. Doing that signals that you’re a fan and that you’re interested in the most relevant storylines.
- Grab some Skittles. The rainbow-colored pellets are Marshawn Lynch’s favorite candy. Make it yours for the next couple weeks. Put a bowl on your desk with picture of Marshawn or his jersey number 24.
- Create a nickname. The Seahawks have the L.O.B, or Legion of Boom. You could have your own L.O.B., as in, Leaders of Business or encourage your teammates and colleagues to create their own nickname.
- Signing off. Seahawks quarterback Russell Wilson ends every press conference with the words “Go Hawks!” You can do the same thing in your emails. Those two words establish a connection not just to the Seahawks, but to Russell himself.
- Expand your knowledge. If just became a Seahawks fan and only take a casual glance at the sports headlines from time to time, take this chance to really expand that knowledge base over the next 5-day time span. Yesterday was Media Day in New York. The players will be on stage answering a variety of questions from media outlets around the world. Find your favorite quotes from Marshawn Lynch, Russell Wilson and Richard Sherman, then keep track of what else they say throughout the week. Learn more about specific players and the team by following their comments.
- Place a prop bet. You don’t need to know anything about the game itself to weigh in on things like “Will the coin toss be heads or tails?” “Will the national anthem be over or under 2 minutes?” Pick one or two interesting wagers and add them to your list of talking points this week. It will keep you interested in the game and open up new conversation possibilities with colleagues.
Jen Mueller, America’s Expert Talker, is at the Super Bowl with the Seattle Seahawks as their sideline reporter. Look for more posts on how to talk about the big game over the next week. She’s also the author of Game Time: Learn to Talk Sports in 5 Minutes a Day for Business.. Her step-by-step process makes sports accessible and practical for relationship building in business. The book is available through Amazon.