Becoming an underdog refers to a situation where an individual or a team is perceived to be at a disadvantage or facing significant challenges in a particular area or industry. Underdogs are often underestimated and considered unlikely to succeed, but they can use their disadvantages to their advantage by adopting unconventional strategies and working harder than their competitors. In many cases, underdogs are celebrated for their perseverance, grit, and ability to overcome adversity, making them popular figures in sports, politics, entertainment, and other fields.


What is an Underdog

An underdog is a person who looks insignificant, resource-constrained and vulnerable compared to his larger rival. Like in sports, the audiences tend to cheer for the underdog even while giving them poor odds to win. However, the underdog indeed has advantages which may not be at first obvious from the outside.

Advantages of Being An Underdog

The biggest advantage is that, the world won’t be able to know what the underdog is capable of, to what extent he can perform and what he is capable of delivering.

Also, an underdog has pretty much nothing to lose. No one blames an underdog when he makes little improvements, even if he doesn’t solve the entire problem. At least he tried, right…

Disadvantages of Being An Underdog

The underdog’s biggest dilemma or the greatest threat is to become the top dog. Yes…
A lack of funding, lesser consumers, fewer customers, lesser brand value and resources could be the disadvantages. Even the media hype could be lesser, and this could be a disadvantage, at least that’s what most people think.

Examples of The Most Famous Underdogs in Business and Sports World

Ratan Tata 

Though he remained an underdog all his life, he had certain traits which he converted into superpowers and today the former chairman of Tata Sons is one of the most influential industrialists, or we can say one of the most influential people on the planet.

Do you know what is common in between Azim Premji and Ratan Tata—”Working Hard In Private”

Founder and Chairman of Wipro, Azim Premji

Who is arguably Asia’s biggest philanthropist has remained an underdog all his life, without much media coverage, but look at him, he did everything in private without much hue and cry, and today he is one of the world’s most influential industrialists and philanthropists.

Rahul Dravid and VVS Laxman

Rahul Dravid and VVS Laxman have always been underdogs, throughout their cricketing careers. While they got less hype from the media and audiences alike, the followers and fans of cricket were mostly taken by surprise with the end results.

Both Dravid and Laxman made India win in numerous situations, and even in the toughest of times. Best examples of Underdogs indeed were they. And do you know what was common in between Dravid and Laxman—”Practicing In Private”

Michael Jordan

When he started out, he wanted to be on the Varsity team so badly that, in private, he worked harder and harder and harder to be recognized as worthy of being in the team, even though he was stuck on the JV squad.

Was he looking for the approval of the coach? Was he looking for fans’ adoration ? Who knows… But that kick and that dedication was what helped him move from someone with great natural talents to the greatest basketball legend ever. “Practicing in private, without much noise, is the takeaway here“…

Final Thoughts

Become an Underdog -The Strategy

Practicing in private might not make perfect. But that perfect practice will get you closer to perfection, so that in the future you are showered with rewards.

  • Identify the area or industry where you want to become an underdog. This could be sports, politics, entertainment, or any other field where underdogs are celebrated.
  • Look for ways to differentiate yourself from the competition. This could involve pursuing unconventional training methods, adopting a unique style, or emphasizing your background or personal story.
  • Embrace your disadvantages or challenges. Highlighting the obstacles you have overcome or the unique perspective you bring to the table can help you stand out and gain support from others.
  • Work hard and stay committed to your goals. Underdogs often have to put in more effort and overcome more obstacles than their competitors, so a strong work ethic is essential.
  • Find and build a support network. Underdogs often have a loyal fan base that supports and roots for them, so building relationships with others who believe in you and your goals can be a key to success.

Remember, becoming an underdog is not necessarily an easy or straightforward path, but with perseverance and hard work, you can use your disadvantages to your advantage and achieve your goals.

Hence, Strategy is this–”Practice in private and get rewarded in public, which is The Underdog Advantage“.