Youth Sports Parents -
Sports Coaches keep them informed!
Talk to youth sports parents and they should tell you how great their child’s sports coach is and how their child loves attending training and competition sports games events.
Successful kids sport coaches will keep parents, positive and onside, by following a few commonsense approaches and being 100% transparent in everything they do.
How do sports coaches keep youth sports parents onside?
Talk to junior sports coaches about the negatives of the job and most will reply, dealing with the parents.
When kids sports are run safely and efficiently, parents are mostly content. Coaches, by outlining your season’s goals for the team will enlighten the parent body on your aims and coaching philosophy.
Most importantly ask parents to read and sign off on the code of conduct.
The parents who are hung up on winning at all costs can make an early decision whether to stay with your coaching style or move on. Be true to your personal coaching philosophy. Communicate this via a parent meeting. Send this note home.
Keep in mind the old saying of ‘you are never going to keep everyone happy all of the time’. This is certainly true when coaching kid’s sports.
Follow the below points throughout the season to help minimize negative parent attitudes and complaints.
- Be transparent in all things. That is, don't hide what you are doing. Communicate all your actions.
- Be predictable
- Be consistent
- Distribute the coaches, athletes and parent code of conduct at the first training session. Engage all parties in discussing its contents at a training session or conduct a private meeting. This allows parents to air any problems or concerns from the beginning. In today’s busy times emailing parents may be the most appropriate form of communication. Have parent and athlete sign off on the code of conduct.
- If you have a team manager have them to communicate non related coaching information via a weekly newsletter (email)
- Coaches should always think like a parent. What would I want to know or be keep up to date on?
- Encourage POSITIVE talk among the parent group
- Address any parent or athlete disharmony instantly, don’t let it snowball
- Have an open door policy for athletes and parents to discuss any issues positive or negative.
- Invite the parents to occasionally listen to your debriefing of the athletes. This gives youth sports parents a chance to understand and hopefully appreciate the great work you are doing.
- Educate and practice sports etiquette.
Constantly communicate to parents that kids sports are all about maximum participation, player enjoyment and skill acquisition.
Treat athletes and parents with respect. Strive to engage kids to learn new sports skills and sports games strategies. Plan safe, structured training sessions and sports games, and don’t forget to have FUN.
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