The season just ended. It's finally time to take off your administor, coach, and/or volunteer hats and relax for a bit. Enjoy it - you've earned it.
Ok, relaxing time is over.
Registration for next season is right around the corner, and there is so much to do! Not to mention the fact that everything from the previous season needs to be wrapped up, too. Below are some items you can tackle as soon as the final whistle blows in order to stay productive and transition smoothly into the upcoming season.
Send Out Surveys
How do you think the season went? What went well? What didn't go well? Where are opportunities for growth?
The responses in your head may be different than the general consensus among parents. The best way to figure out how the season went is simple: ask! With the help of free survey tools like SurveyMonkey and KwikSurveys, you can gather feedback from members of your sports organization, and use that information to improve next year.
When creating a survey, it is important to use neutral language and include a healthy combination of specific and open-ended questions. Specific questions like "On a scale of 1-5, rate ___ " can help you get direct and quick feedback on an area of importance that you want to assess. Open-ended questions like "Please comment on ____ " allow people to give specific responses, and even address topics that may not have been included in the survey. Using these together can give you a clear picture of what people are thinking.
Even though the season just ended, that doesn't mean your sports organization has to go ghost for the next couple of months. People come to your organization to play the sport (obviously), but they stay for the sense of community. This community continues to exist after the last game of the season, and it is something you can tap into during the off-season.
Parents love taking photos. What about asking parents to send you their favorite pictures to post to the website and social media pages? Kids love getting together for events. How about hosting an awards banquet or a party for a big professional sports game?
When I look back on my favorite childhood sports memories, they all take place off of the field. The pool parties, the movies nights, and team dinners are what I remember, and these can make a significant, positive impact on kids as they grow up.
This naturally goes hand-in-hand with the section above, but it can also help to come up with a purposeful plan. There can be a lot of dead time in the off-season due to a lack of daily updates, but this provides you with an opportunity to thrive during a time period where other teams and leagues are inactive.
A newsletter is a great way to keep everyone up-to-date and invested in the organization year-round. If you have a website, you can post this every month (or quarter) and send email/text messages to parents and players to keep them in the loop . Also, by posting new content to the website during the off-season, you are essentially marketing to online visitors that your organization is active and your members are engaged at all times. This can help attract new families, and potentially lead to more subscriptions to your website.
With a new season comes new board members, coaches, staff, volunteers, etc. Help these groups of people be successful next year by giving them all of the information they need to hit the ground running.
Previous documents like concessions shift schedules or referee contact information can come in handy if different individuals are taking over the administrative aspect. Also, be sure to pass along the login information for the website, email address, and other online applications - you don't want the entire organization to be locked out their own accounts!
Last but not least, write a transition report (also known as a "handover") to the person filling your role. This doesn't have to be anything fancy; just describe what you did in your role, how you did it, and what you learned. These bits of advice can help make for a smooth transition!
Looking to stay productive during your off-season? Click the "Sign Up Now" button below or send me an email at firstname.lastname@example.org to learn more.