It’s not uncommon for athletes to have Facebook pages or Twitter accounts. But not many have a LinkedIn page, and it would be hard to find one as extensive as Reed Doughty’s.
Doughty created his page after taking a business class this past offseason, and he told me that it’s all about being prepared.
“Last offseason I did the Wharton program and I started developing my resume and thinking about what I wanted to project myself as, life after football,” he explained. “I think it’s something you do as a veteran player while you’re still in it. I’m just trying to make connections and see what’s next.”
Of course, his page lists his position as a safety with the Redskins, but it also includes his various roles as a spokesperson for the National Kidney Foundation, the Hearing Loss Association of America and the Spinal Research Foundation.
Doughty has personal ties to all of those organizations. His son, Micah, needed a kidney transplant not long after being born. Doughty himself suffers hearing loss and uses a hearing aid on a daily basis, and a back surgery in 2008 connected him to the Spinal Research Foundation.
“While I’m in season, I’m obviously very very focused on what I’m doing,” he said. “Offseason I’m still focused on football, but at the same time, I’m just trying to open up avenues outside of football. I’m really thankful for football. It’s opened up a lot of doors and given me not only opportunities, but choices. That’s what I’m looking forward to.”
Doughty doesn’t have a specific career path planned just yet. Exercise science, strength and conditioning and relationship building for business are all things he’s interested in, but at the moment he’s happy to just network (his LinkedIn page can be found here).
“It’s a very real thing you have to face as an athlete,” Doughty said. “You have to accept that you need to do something for a living after football. I really don’t know what’s going to happen next, but being prepared is going to help me that much more when it comes time to take that step.”