LinkedIn has announced a host of current and former Indian athletes, such as former Indian women’s cricket team captain Mithali Raj, Indian cricketers Rishabh Pant and Ravindra Jadeja, Olympic gold medallist Abhinav Bindra, former luger Shiva Keshavan, Paralympic shooter Avani Lekhara and Indian football legend Bhaichung Bhutia as part of the company’s Influencer programme.
LinkedIn hopes to increase engagement in India by onboarding these current and former Indian athletes. As ambassadors, each athlete will share anecdotes and experiences from their respective careers through a campaign, which will be focused on educating the masses about how to make it big in the world of sports. The athletes will also use their platform to highlight the importance of mental health, inclusion in sports and diversity.
Pooja Chhabria, APAC Creator Management Lead, LinkedIn, commented:
“LinkedIn has always been a space for everyone, and now sporting professionals have discovered the platform as a place to share different facets of who they are. They are not just sharing relevant sports-related content but also contributing to important topics such as leadership, teamwork, mental health, and learning from failures. By bringing eminent athletes and sports personalities on board, we are aiming for their rich experience to educate and inspire young athletes and varied professional communities.
“We are excited to witness these sporting legends build their professional networks, spotlight the world of sports, and unlock new opportunities for themselves and their followers.“
Mithali Raj, former captain of the Indian women cricket team, stated:
“When I started [my career], people could follow me on the field, but beyond that, there weren’t many means to connect [with others] on a professional level. LinkedIn has removed that barrier by allowing me to plan how my off-the-field career progresses in the future. For me, LinkedIn is the perfect platform to share my experiences and opinions and connect with like-minded people, while allowing me to go beyond the sports community and reach out to a broader audience.“
Shiva Keshavan, Asian champion and six-time Olympian, said:
“As athletes, we gain many valuable skills that are transferable to professional life. Teamwork, leadership, time management, sportsmanship, handling pressure, competition and commitment towards a goal are all familiar territories for athletes. By allowing athletes to get a head start in building a professional network, platforms like LinkedIn are an effective way to prepare for the career transition all athletes will have to eventually face.“
Bhaichung Bhutia, former Indian football team captain, added:
“LinkedIn has made it possible for me to share my learnings and experiences from the world of football with professionals from different backgrounds. Through my posts, I’m able to share what I’ve learned, what’s happening with my football academy, and inspire anyone who wants to follow their passion and dreams.“