Today we are talking about how to be a Team Mom. There are all kinds of “Team Moms” out there and in fact these days there are quite a few “Team Parents” and lets face it, “Co-Team Parents”. Lets face it, we are all busy and when you are at that parents meeting and the coach gently asks if anyone would like to serve as the team parent, I know exactly what that looks like when everyone looks around, looks down, or immediately has to check their phone for an important message. Truthfully, without good parents willing to support a coach who is dedicating his or her time and effort to lead your child in the sport that they have chosen, its not going to work.
After 12 years in the game including almost every sport from baseball to tennis, soccer to hockey, softball to lacrosse, and swimming, don’t even get me started about swimming, here are the qualities that I think are most important when it comes to being an Organized Team Mom:
Be Patient: I’m not always the most patient person, ask anyone who knows me. But when it comes to working in a volunteer group, even though its in your personal life and your child’s life, patience wins the game. You need to gather information, find pieces that aren’t in the right place and you simply can’t rush it because everything will take twice as long as you expect. Volunteer organizations run the spectrum from wildly unorganized to exceptionally efficient.
Be Organized: You need to have a knack for details. And yes, it all begins with a team binder. You’ll be making laminated team cards, you’ll have worksheets for team rosters,any kind of worksheet for key information, you’ll have a clipboard and pen on hand at all times so people can fill things out, think team photos, snack schedules, updated game schedules, end of the season party. All of those details require you to stay on top of them, to capture and organize them well ahead of time so you can turn around and share them well ahead of time so the rest of the team can be prepared.
Be Passionate: Not a crazy kind of stalker, psycho, won’t quite screaming in the stands, not have a nice thing to say about the other team kind of passion. Nope. I mean a passion for seeing children learn. Youth sports is an opportunity for your children to learn and grow and if you are lucky and work hard to find the right leagues that match your child’s temperament, whether its recreational or all the way up to showcase for college looks, you need to be in tune with what’s best for your child. That passion for making them have a positive experience no matter if for its their earliest effort when they are tiny all the way up to a state championship in high school, you need to make sure it all matches up. If you don’t have a passion, not for the sport,(although it helps if you like the sport) it won’t work out. The thing is its not about you! Its about your child. Its about the sport that they love. And its about how they feel about themselves when they are out there doing the thing that they love most. That’s the passion that you need to ask yourself “Does it rest inside?” Cause if you are looking to do what you didn’t get to do in high school, its not going to work out.
Those are the qualities that I think are most important when it comes to be an organized team Mom. As you are sitting in those team meetings this Fall, I encourage you to think about raising your hand. I promise its not that hard! We’ve got a few forms to get you started in our GO MOM! DIY Planner. I also want to point you towards ESPN’s Wide World of Sports. Recently while at the 2012 Disney Social Media Moms Celebration I was so lucky to be picked to attend a morning event where we had the chance to travel the complex and learn all about how Disney Sports knows team Moms. I’m telling you ~ if you ever wondered what highly competitive sports is all about, that’s how its done when you are playing with the big kids.
What do you think are the most important qualities for an Organized Team Mom and for that matter, any Team Parent, co-parent, Dad, Mom, Caregiver, maybe even Grandma and Grandpa?
Thanks so much for stopping by ~ we’ll see you next time!
Disclosure: I reference my experience at ESPN Wide World of Sports purely as a reference for parents of student athletes playing at the highest level. I was not asked to post about that event or any in connection with the 2012 Disney Social Media Moms Celebration. All opinions are entirely my own.