Business meets Special Olympics

A large number of parallels exist between sports and the “normal” business life: personal characteristics such as courage, enthusiasm, endurance and performance are required in both areas. Along with that, mental strength, regeneration, and imagination as well as the ability to deal with victory or defeat, with ups and downs, form the basis of success. The quality of our thinking determines our actions and the resulting success.

Creating chances together

”Heartbeat for the World“ is the theme of the 11th Special Olympics World Winter Games for people with intellectual disabilities, taking place between March 14 – 25, 2017 in Graz, Schladming, and Ramsau, Austria. After major cities such as Nagano, Athens, Pyeongchang or Los Angeles hosting the Games, it is an honor for Austria to hold the largest sports and social event of 2017 the second time.

Around 2,700 athletes from 107 nations will compete in nine disciplines (Floor Hockey, Floorball, Stick Shooting, Figure Skating, Ice Speed Skating, Alpine Skiing, Snowboarding, Nordic Skiing and Snowshoeing) in three different locations (Graz, Schladming, Ramsau) – all fighting for recognition, applause and the medal.

”Business meets Special Olympics“ is a special program as part of the World Winter Games, aimed at small firms and businesses.

The goal of “Business meets Special Olympics” is to not only emphasize on the numerous similarities between sports and business but also to raise awareness about inclusion. Besides, the Special Olympics World Winter Games want everyone to catch the excitement, the joy, the true emotions and unbridled passion of this event.

Special Inspiration – Lecture series with Pointner, Gottwald & Co.

Once the competitions of the World Winter Games are in full swing, a special lecture series built around the two topics sports and economics is taking place between March 20 – 23, 2017. Widely known personalities will be presenting their personal stories and approaches to those topics. The lectures will be held both in Graz (Messe Graz) and Schladming (Congress).

“Today’s fast-paced society is constantly struggling to go bigger, faster, further. We often forget that a good performance stems from completely different factors. Special Olympics offers a great opportunity to raise awareness about this phenomenon. It will make us understand that success requires different qualities”, explains Alexander Pointner, one of the speakers.


Timeline of the Lectures:

20. März 2017
11 Uhr
21. März 2017
11 Uhr
22. März 2017
11 Uhr
23. März 2017
11 Uhr
Graz (Messe)

Schladming (Congress) ALEXANDER








Experience special moments – immerge, feel, experience

The biggest and most emotional sports and social event in the world is the perfect occasion to give businesses the possibility to immerge in a special atmosphere and benefit personally from it.

To take the best advantages out of this event, a special package has been put together, including the following:

v Participation in one of the speeches, including drinks and a small snack after the speech

v Visiting the competition of the Special Olympics on the same day


Costs per participant: € 55,--

Packages starting from 20 participants: € 45,-- / participant 

Sign up at:


All lecture series at a glance:

ALEXANDER POINTNER. Over his ten-year experience as a senior trainer of the Austrian ski jumpers he has been an inspiring personality for the public. In his speeches, he emphasizes that there is not just one key to success. There is no universal “recipe” for being successful. Alexander Pointner shares his personal story and the path he took together with his team. It was a path full of detours, conflicts, efforts but also moments of joy, interpersonal encounters and a constant, mutual learning process.

JUTTA KLEINSCHMIDT. She is one of the most successful women in the field of motorsports. Jutta Kleinschmidt is the first – and so far, only – woman to win the Rallye Dakar in the overall ranking. In her speeches, she motivates the audience to trust themselves and their teams and to show courage to begin new ventures in order to be successful. She narrates with excitement and vividness how she managed to show commitment, endurance, ambition, creativity and courage in the male-dominated field of motorsports.

FELIX GOTTWALD. He is the role-model when it comes to mental strength of top athletes. He understands, like no other, how to make the methods behind this strength transparent to others. In his speech, he focuses on principles of success in high-performance sports and communicates those authentically, comprehensibly and practically for the audience to use them in both private and professional contexts. As the most successful Olympian athlete in Austria, Felix Gottwald knows how to inspire and motivate with enthusiasm, humor and credibility.

JOEY KELLY. In his illuminating speech “No Limits – How to achieve my goal“, Joey Kelly impressively presents his career as businessman and endurance athlete. Being persistent, always keeping his goals in mind and having a strong will and passion led him to success. It all started with a bet where endurance sport served as a compensation to his work with the legendary “Kelly Family” who celebrated great musical success during the 90ies. They were the ones who taught him how to achieve what he wanted with discipline, ambition, and the ability to set new goals.

WOLFGANG FASCHING. Evolved from cycle sport into endurance sport. The extreme athlete and expert on motivation, Wolfgang Fasching, demonstrated his remarkable talent in Australia, North America, Asia and Europe. As alpine climber he achieved to not only reach the top of the 7 Summits but also the Antarctic continent. In his speech he shares his personal experiences about extreme situations and highlights the necessity of mental strength for great performances.

MICHAEL KRAMMER. Is the president of Austrian soccer team SK Rapid. In his speech “Together.Fighting.Winning” he discusses the following questions: Do businesses need more team spirit like SK Rapid has? Do businesses sometimes need a “Rapid-Viertelstunde”, a clapping and chanting done by fans entering the final fifteen minutes of a game? The successful manager pursued a rather unusual but successful path: from the military academy to an economic manager. His unique experiences in those two areas are shared during a talk right after his speech.

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