Ardie Savea | World Rugby Player of the Year


In many ways, it’s easy to draw parallels between business and sports. Both require a firm grasp on “the rules of the game” to succeed, both need a grand strategy to guide the implementation of tactics day-to-day, and without a strong team who have a firm grasp of their roles and expertise, you can’t win in neither. In this podcast, Simo talks to the nominee for World Rugby Player of the Year, flanker for the Hurricanes, and All-Black, Ardie Savea.

Ardie is unique among professional athletes in that he started his brand of motivational tees rather than go the route of big brand endorsements. He continues to find success in both rugby and business and has a lot to share about his experiences navigating the fields of both endeavours. From standing tall when others don’t believe in you and rising to the challenges with the right mentality, there’s much to gain from unpacking the lessons Ardie has learned.

Key talking points: 

  1. 01:58 Ardies story and all the sacrifices made by his family made him grateful for his upbringing.
  2. 05:10 The drive to push yourself, be better, and move beyond your comfort zone are keys to success.
  3. 08:10 Ardie began working at a very young age, and you would be surprised to find out where…
  4. 09:30 When people doubted him, Ardie worked to prove them wrong – with one compelling motivator.
  5. 10:13 Ever face negativity in your life? Here’s how to turn it around.
  6. 13:14 Lucky to have made the NZ7 squad straight out of college then was contracted to Wellington Lions, then The Hurricanes, but he had to grow up quickly in the limelight.
  7. 21:56 The first step is always the hardest – there are many lessons to be learned from the mistakes made.
  8. 23:00 Building a strong culture helps teams work cohesively and united towards a goal.
  9. 23:37 Business is just a group of people who come together, get trained on a sure thing, have a specific culture, and achieve an objective and goal – like a sports team.
  10. 25:30 Ardie’s journey into his fashion brand, he learned a lot from YouTube, talking to people and understands that growing a business is a continuous learning journey.
  11. 27:43 You need a purpose for your business. If your company has a goal, you can look back to that as an anchor point as you continue your journey.
  12. 28:46 When your world comes crumbling down from a high, you find yourself needing to re-adapt and pick yourself up from a dark place.
  13. 32:36 When you focus on the money, it slips through your fingers. When you focus on building something that works, you focus on creating something substantial.
  14. 36:51 Unique, limited edition items create scarcity and hype — people like to get something unique.
  15. 37:36 Focus on what you’re good at and let others around you do what they’re experts in.
  16. 39:45 Learn the proper formulas to be able to price your products well enough to cover your margins.
  17. 46:45 Everyone today has their own channel, and everyone should be allowed to communicate their brands into the world.
  18. 49:04 Next Moment Mentality: shake off/flush away failure and focus on what’s the next thing that needs to be done on the field to find success.
  19. 54:08 Structure and a plan in place are necessary to chart the growth and evolution of any business for it to find success.
  20. 01:01:01 It’s all about the long game. Maybe not winning now but taking the critical steps to win big down the line. It’s all about being strategic.
  21. 01:01:55 You do need people who are, with their skillsets, able to do critical actions in the now.
  22. 01:03:15 Team members focus on what they need to do – doing their job. Team leaders need to take stock of the bigger picture.


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