It is common practice in the overseas sports world to sign a contract with an agent and leave the transfer and annual salary negotiations in the hands of professionals.
Even in the developing country of Japan, there are a few agents. We asked Mr. Hiroyuki Hirono, a businessman who represents athletes, about the reality of "career change" in the sports world.
Mr. Hiroyuki Kanno is involved in everything from finding and scouting players to negotiating annual salaries and transfer contracts, making a significant contribution to the production of players' sports lives. Similar to a recruitment agency in the business world, he says that there are two streams of work: one is to find and negotiate with registered players to transfer to a new club, and the other is to scout for players who fit the desired position and work to acquire them. In the case of a request from a contracted player, it is of course the player's will that is respected. We listen to the player's needs and desires, such as the desire for more opportunities to play, an increase in salary, or the desire to expand the field of play overseas, and negotiate the transfer accordingly. In addition to skills, the most important thing is the level of professionalism of the player. If a player has high skills but is still young, we sometimes send him overseas without regard for our own interests, to give him a chance to establish his professionalism. For players who want to move overseas, they sometimes set aside one season as a preparation period in order to sell them to foreign clubs, saying, "I want you to take a look at this player. The recent WBC and Japan-Korea World Cup were "showcases" for foreign clubs," said Mr. Sono. In the case where a club makes an offer and moves on, if there is no one among the registered players, he will find the right player through his extensive personal network. We actually go to the game site to check the physical ability and playing style. At Koshien, Inter High School, and other tournaments where new players who have not yet been introduced to the world appear, we sometimes check for hidden talents. In the world of sports, even if a player is good enough, it does not mean that he will be able to show his full potential after transferring. We also analyze whether a player's personality and aspirations match with the soil. Particularly in the case of overseas transfers, it is also important to determine whether or not the player will be able to fit in with the country's soil and team after the transfer. In the past, when we invited players from Europe, we would invite them to open-terrace pizza and pasta restaurants to help them adjust to Japan.
Currently, the company is working with former soccer player Lee Seung-Jun to provide optimal matching from both business and player perspectives. He used to be a soccer player, so it's interesting to see the different perspectives we have when we go to watch a game. For example, he looks not only at the player who shot the ball, but also at how the player who did not receive the ball moved. In a volleyball game, I would check who showed leadership to get the team back on track after a spike was scored. The job of a sports agent is to help the athlete move to a place where he or she can be more successful, and to help him or her succeed after that. The most common forerunners of sports agents are former players, trainers and other insiders, sports writers and others with extensive industry connections and knowledge, and lawyers.
knowledgeable people such as sports writers, and people with a wealth of legal knowledge such as lawyers. In many cases, it is said that bringing in a business point of view can make negotiations on transfers and annual salaries smoother. The world of sports is basically the same as the world of business. The world of sports is basically the same as the world of business.
I hope that more clubs and players will make good use of agents to acquire players and find transfer targets, so that everyone - players, clubs, and spectators - will be happier.
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File No.15 From "Type", a job change magazine, June 2006 issue, P40-41