It’s no small task to manage the London 2012 Olympic Games, which will bring in around 9 million people from around the world.It involves redeveloping entire areas of the city and overseeing an incredibly complex security operation, a massive $14 billion budget, and tons of corporate sponsors.
The entire success of the games is up to Sebastian Coe, a former Olympian and ex-member of British parliament, who’s head of the London 2012 organising committee. Here’s what he told the Wall Street Journal about what it’s like to run the games:
Particularly in the UK, there’s a lot of scrutiny. You do so many different things. It’s about engagement. It’s about making sure people understand what you’re doing. It also brings in the element of sport. It touches politics, it touches business, it’s bring £700 million pounds worth of sponsorships to the table. It’s making sure the International Olympic committee is comfortable with what you’re doing, and all the time, [knowing] that you’ve been entrusted with the world’s most recognisable brand. It’s your responsibility to hand it off in better shape to the next city. I probably recognised the breadth, but not quite how many different things I would be doing. …
The International Olympic Committee has to be credited, because the clarity of vision behind the games has held fast, and it’s held fast in a very uncertain economic climate.
He’s already dealt with controversy over the games— like the size of its massive budget during a harsh economic climate, snafus with the ticketing and ballot system this summer, and BP’s $58 million sponsorship deal after its oil spill last year.
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