We’ve all been there. Willing to put our hand up to contribute to the local club, association, community event. It starts with so much passion and enthusiasm and (bold) statements of “how much time could it take?”, “I can give a little bit back”. Club Communication, Volunteering, Parents, Competitors, its a minefield.
Clubs and in particular sports and social clubs have come along way from notice boards next to the canteen and printed newsletters sent home after a game. Now we all have websites and social media pages. We use text messaging and email newsletters. Some have fancy tv monitors splashing what’s coming up over them every few seconds.
And guess what? We still haven’t solved the “but I didn’t know it was happening” laments that ensue when events are missed or registrations are closed. You can have done all of the above and shouted to the rooftops at last week’s after match presentation, but…..
That is the issue. The very nature of clubs are to bring together like minded people with combined love of something. However, that is very often where the similarities stop. Demographics in small organisations like these can be the broadest you will find. Not just age and gender, but much more.
The average club, association or event needs to effectively communicate (and that is 2 way communication) with players, members, parents, volunteers, staff, officials, sponsors, interested community, friends and the list goes on. Even the messages need to convey different things. How do we make volunteers feel appreciated? Players instructed? Parents comfortable?
Luckily there are tools out there now that can combine the most important aspects to quickly and efficiently get those messages into the palms of the hands of those that need to know them.
We salute all of you that put your hands up to take on those committee and board roles! Don’t let anyone tell you it’s less complex than their day to day jobs. But it is fun and it is one of the most rewarding undertakings. The learnings really are practical training for your ‘other career’, not just in the tasks you undertake but in the way you learn to engage with such a varied soup of personalities.
For self development, it ticks a lot of boxes. And you know that saying, “Don’t work with children or animals”? Well try adding in a team of “volunteers” to the mix!
We would love to hear some of your examples and challenges working in not for profit organisations. Comment here and we’ll see if we can solve some of them for you.
Donna Evans is a long time committee and board member for various not for profit clubs and events. She is also a professional specialising in stakeholder management and change. Combining both of these, she offers solutions to organisation communication challenges through SportsApp. (www.sportsapp.net.au) A very affordable, and revenue raising solution to mobile communications.