Maintaining a sports club

Crowd at sports event

We provide advice to help you ensure your club is well organised and maintained.

Keeping sport fun and safe

Fun is the number one motivator for young children in sport and in life.

Be fair and inclusive

Give everyone a go, regardless of their skill level or ability. The key is participation.

Make it safe

We may think they are made of rubber but young children do hurt themselves and others when playing sport. Not only are they less coordinated and have slower reaction times than adults, they are less capable of assessing risk, so may unknowingly take risks that result in injury.

Set boundaries

Every child who takes part in sport must be able to do so in a fun and safe environment, protected from physical, sexual and emotional abuse. Coaches should:

Develop effective policies

All sporting clubs should develop clear, comprehensive policies aimed at protecting children and ensuring their sporting experience is positive.

For more ideas visit www.playbytherules.net.au

Sports sign on day checklist

Club sponsorship

Sponsorship and sport go hand in hand.  Sport needs corporate dollars to survive and grow, whilst business gains from supporting their local communities and associating their brand/s with positive local images.

Attracting sponsorship can be a difficult process.  Following are some steps that can help you find and then hopefully retain a range of sponsors.

  1. Identify a Sponsorship Coordinator for your club.  This person will be responsible for everything related to sponsorships.  It is imperative that your club looks after your sponsors, which will be so much easier if a dedicated Sponsorship Coordinator that isn't also trying to coach teams, cook sausages or run meetings.
  2. Look past the obvious logo and signage benefits that are easy for you to provide to a potential sponsor.  Think of opportunities for sponsors to interact with your club members to promote their products, provide samples, develop relationships, and create incentives to choose things they can offer to your members.
  3. Whilst cash is great for not-for-profit clubs, it doesn't always need to be money as your club can benefit from other sponsored arrangements.  Sponsored advertising is going to spread the word about your club or event, discounted stock will allow you to sell products with a higher profit margin and the provision of a quality venue gives you a place to hold attractive social and fundraising functions.
  4. Give prospective sponsors options, outline 4-8 different sponsorship opportunities your club can offer. Start with the big one, generally the 'Naming Rights' that includes all the bells and whistles for a significant investment, through to easily provided vouchers or donations that can be used as prizes or volunteer rewards.
  5. Presentation is critical! You need to ensure you provide professionally presented information packages that include brief information about your club or event, plenty of pictures, and your future plans.  Use dot points to avoid long paragraphs and remember to incorporate a list of each sponsorship opportunity, its respective benefits, and the key contact details.
  6. Build a relationship with a potential sponsorship target before you make an official approach. Find out the name of a person you can speak to personally, so that you can meet to create a rapport and paint them a clear picture. If you're genuine and they like you, you'll be more likely to close the deal.
  7. After the negotiating is done it is agreement time.  Remember to record everything that has been agreed upon to ensure there is no confusion down the track.  This is an important step in retaining the sponsor in future years.
  8. As the old saying goes, it is much easier to keep a sponsor than find a new one, so if you say you're going to deliver something, - deliver it!  Treat your sponsors well, support them and go out of your way to include them in your club.  It certainly doesn't hurt to over deliver where you can.

At the end of the day remember that the best sponsorship arrangements are built on a solid relationship that allows both partners to get the most from the agreement.  This is sometimes harder to achieve than it appears.  Without being pushy your Sponsorship Coordinator needs to get sponsors along to functions to ensure the partnership leads to greater return on investment and increases the emotional attachment between the sponsor and the club.

Club assessment tool

The Club Health Check is an online self-assessment tool aimed at helping clubs examine how they are operating. The checklist looks at a number of different factors that are crucial to success at club level and together these factors are used to build an overall picture of the way your club carries out its operations. The assessment should take no more than 30 minutes to complete. Once you have answered all questions, a detailed report will be emailed to you which will identify improvements and growth areas for your organisation. 

We recommend the assessment be completed by 2 or 3 people within your committee and preferably 'key' people who have an overall perspective of the clubs operations and activities. 

To start the checklist, please click 'Begin'

Club databases

Membership databases and websites can make collecting information and communications with your members very accessible and effective. Up-to-date information can be generated quickly to all members through the following resources:

One of the goals of a membership database is to help you get to know your members and to identify any changes or trends in your membership base so that your club can respond accordingly. For example, if there is a decline in your membership you need to be able to work out whether it is men, women, juniors or particular age groups that are leaving your club so that you can address this. The database could also help you keep record of the following:

If you were to embark upon a membership drive, the database can help you identify gaps so that you can target particular categories of members. The bottom line with any information gathering system is the ability to answer the question "What do we know and how do we know it?

Tips for a successful AGM

Tasks before the AGM

Tasks at the AGM

Tasks after the AGM

Three essential tips

  1. Give plenty of notice
  2. Be organised
  3. Make it appealing

A typical agenda for the AGM might include

Volunteers

Most volunteer turnover occurs at the end of the season or at the time of the annual general meeting (AGM). A succession plan is necessary to provide opportunities for potential leaders within organisations to be identified and developed in readiness to move up into leadership positions. Organisations that plan for smooth transitions of leadership positions are less likely to experience disruptions to their operations and can better position themselves to replace volunteers who vacate their current positions. Remember, the main indicator of good practice in volunteer management is volunteers that feel valued and part of the organisation. If this is the case, those volunteers will be more likely to want to contribute to that organisation again.

The aim of good volunteer management practices is to enhance the performance of volunteers because volunteers who feel they are achieving their goals are more likely to feel satisfied about their involvement with the organisation. The cycle of need fulfilment, positive reinforcement and satisfaction is what good volunteer management practice is all about.


Source: Recognising Volunteers – Active Australia Volunteer Management Program; Australian Sports Commission

Succession planning

(The following information is sourced from the Australian Sports Commission)

Succession planning is vital to the continuity of your club. It ensures your club can continue to be successful and provide members with what they need. While some turnover of jobs is normal, high turnover rates can be a problem.If the workload falls to only one or two people, the quality and fortunes of the club can quickly decline when those people leave. A succession plan will ensure that if someone steps down, someone can step into their shoes and pick up where they left off. Organisations that plan for smooth transitions of leadership positions are less likely to experience disruptions to their activities.

Keys to a good succession plan

Many of the components of a good succession plan will also help other areas of the club. These will usually cover how things are done in the club, such as:

The second part of good succession planning is human resources. Many of the above issues relate to people, whether it is fearing change, staying around for too long, or being the ‘gatekeeper’ (see description below). Trying to avoid any of these situations is as important as trying to groom successors for certain positions. This ensures that when the time for a changeover comes, it can be managed with a minimum of disruption and fuss. The ideal succession plan will allow existing volunteers to walk away without being missed.

Barriers to succession planning

There are some barriers to succession planning that your club might face. There may be some committee members or volunteers who are behaving in a certain way, or the committee may have processes that will not make succession planning easy.Some common hurdles that might prevent effective succession planning are:

For help with the development of your club's succession plan contact our Sport and Recreation Development team on 131 872.

Last Updated: Friday, 24 November 2017 14:27