Rugby player’s testimonial seasons are well known for being full on and busy and for Charlie Sharples that was the case…but it did also open his eyes to the world outside rugby and led to him joining Team-i.
“I had a really successful testimonial season last year and it was fantastically busy on and off the pitch,” explains Charlie. “I was so fortunate to get lots of support from the community, but one of the most interesting aspects of the year was the chance to meet people who I might not normally bump into in my day to day life.
“That meant spending a lot more time with business people and leaders and, because of getting involved with them and meeting up with my testimonial events, I was asked to do some speeches and talk to groups about leadership and teamwork.
“That was a really enjoyable experience,” adds Charlie. “It was more and more clear as I spoke to people in business that there was a lot of crossover between what we learn and put into practice on the pitch and what business can learn and implement.”
So, when Team-I came knocking at Charlie’s door it seemed a natural progression to sign on as an associate with the business. Charlie will now be a speaker and motivational coach as part of Team-i’s events in the Cotswolds.
“I like the ethos of Team-I and it’s clear that the principles of teamwork and leadership built into their models are invaluable to business,” adds Charlie. “I will hopefully be able to bring my experience to bear as well and have some input into the way the courses are built and developed.”
And as far as that experience goes, Charlie at the age of 28 is still aiming to be a fighting force for Gloucester Rugby in the coming season and beyond. Having started early in his playing career with the club and having those memorable four appearances for England under bis belt he could be said to have achieved ‘veteran’ status already…but that doesn’t mean he will be taking it easy. There is no horizon looming on his pro career in Charlie’s mind.
“You soon get found out if you take it easy in professional rugby,” adds Charlie. “I am very much concentrating on my playing career now and holding down my place at Gloucester. The club is looking in good shape and I want to be a part of it for many years to come.”
It’s clear with a busy agenda both on and off the field that Charlie remains one of the most high profile and engaging players in the game, meaning his input and contribution to the Team-i story can only lead the business on to further success.