Team management goes way beyond just the game. An important aspect of the team is the parents who need to be kept in confidence, to ensure the game season goes on smoothly and successfully.
Some parents might be difficult, some might be obsessed with their kids’ victory, some might have a whole lot of suggestions of which not all can be implemented, some might be supportive too. But with this mix of parents, it sometimes becomes really taxing for the coach and athletic director to conduct team meetings. Without team meetings and proper communication, parents are left to their imagination of what’s going on in the sports coaching, and, that may not be healthy for the team.
To help you make meetings productive, informative and enjoyable for all concerned, here are a few tips.
Have an agenda
Every meeting should have an agenda. You can choose from – Planning for the upcoming game season, Performance review, Quarterly review and future steps, Introducing a communication protocol, or create an agenda that fits your meeting. Agenda ensures people come prepared or with a certain mind frame and it also adds seriousness to the meeting.
Make the meeting participative
Let parents participate and say openly what they want to say. By allowing parents to speak their minds out, you will not only help release the burden on their side, but you will also get a fair understanding of the groups’ thinking and mood in general. Have a healthy discussion. Tell them your plan and perspective. By encouraging participation, you will ensure understanding and support, get great ideas for team and get the confidence of parents, which will be very crucial for the team’s success.
Let parents know they are valued
Parents write the checks and call the shots where their kid takes her coaching. They obviously will have some anxiety in them regarding their kid’s coaching, after all there’s a future attached to it. So if parents sound a little too critical or demanding, you might try and settle the anxiety by explaining things to them. By telling parents to take a backseat, you will just add on to their nervousness. More so, parents can instill confidence and positivity at home that will help the child’s morale and her game. These are important inputs. Just let parents know their contribution is valued.
One of a great way to involve parents is to assign them roles. You will need all the help, especially if the team is travelling out for a tournament or for a game. Assign someone the in-charge of team discipline, some as the in-charge of food (just to ensure that the whole team is eating healthy), someone as the in-charge of logistics and so on.
For a team’s success, it is essential for both, parents and coaches, to understand and acknowledge that they are on the same side of the team. A team that has all positive and enthused players, committed coaches and supportive parents, is sure to succeed.