Finding and keeping members involved in the day-to-day running of tennis clubs is an ever-increasing challenge. All too often the same sets of shoulders are carrying the weight of a huge number of chores and roles at the club. What happens when those shoulders shrug the responsibility away… for whatever reason? Is there a back-stop to take up the load?
Planning for the long-term includes attracting and retaining members to work with the club.
A few ideas for succession planning might include:
- Identifying the core skills that may be needed on a committee, and ‘headhunting’ people who match the profiles
- Working on some flexibility around meeting times, meeting duration, regularity, and formats that may attract some other contributors
- Sticking to your commitment to adhere to efficient meeting practices
- Recruiting a couple of older juniors to contribute the ‘youth’ voice to the club and encourage them to recognise the importance of their input to the club activities
- Selling the merits of being involved eg valued opinion, CV item, networking opportunity, experience, and a gesture of contribution
- Establishing a clear and concise definition of expected and/or hoped for roles to be undertaken so that individuals may not be overwhelmed or daunted by the prospect
- Inviting people to be as involved as they can be. For example, they may not be able to commit to the committee but they may be able to offer different roles and support in other contexts
- Considering incentives for each committee member to build their own sub-committee to work on their specific portfolios
- Publicly promoting and thanking the efforts of your volunteers and committees generally, via newsletters, awards, rewards, and maybe a ‘thank you’ function or two.
Many sporting clubs run to strict principles and regulations, and whilst it is important to maintain core standards of effective governance, it is also valuable to add a dash of flexibility and a drop or two of fresh thinking. Combined the result will be a clever mix of responsive and relevant decision-making for clubs, and a revitalised enthusiasm amongst existing and new members.
For further advice, please contact Simonne at Tennis Tasmania or call (03) 6108 8204