Many things help coaches run a successful business. Some are incredibly obvious to some but completely overlooked by others. Here are 10 simple tips that can help coaches. Thanks to Terry Stone from Grace Park Hawthorn Club for sharing his insights.
1. Arrive early
Sounds good in theory, arrive a couple of minutes before the lesson starts so there is no waiting around! WRONG – what happens if there is unexpected traffic, or the lock is jammed on the court – Arriving 15 minutes will give coaches a bit of a buffer, making sure an unexpected event doesn’t delay lesson starting time.
2. Dress like a professional
Sometimes image is everything. Look the part, wear professional-looking sportswear, and make sure there are no stains on the front. If you want to clients see you in a professional light, don’t look sloppy. Clean shoes, the right sized pants, and a collar go a long way!
3. Start the lesson on time – finish the lesson on time
Young coaches can fall into the trap of wanting to coach all the way up to the last minute of the lesson, wanting to be fair to the client. Even though it’s very commendable to take care of the client, falling behind means each lesson gets pushed back; even the most experienced coaches won’t get away with looking disorganized. A good rule of thumb is younger groups of kids need about 5 minutes to get the balls into the basket. older or more experienced players will still need 3/4minutes to get the balls in. By getting the balls up with 5 minutes to go means the next lesson will start on time. Use any extra minutes to do reflex volleys until times up.
4. Pick up the balls
Goes without saying…you would think but assistant coaches are notorious for leaving balls out on the court after a lesson. 25 balls mean $25 and that adds up over time. Make sure coaches retrieve balls left under seats, roll several courts away, and have been hit over the fence.
5. Keep parents outside the fence
Parents love to pick up balls, they feel like it’s being helpful. To them, it means that the faster the balls are picked up (or the basket remains full at all times) the better, squeezing every minute out of that hourly fee. The problem is,
6. Wear a watch
Looking at phones to tell the time is a big no-no! Clients assume looking at phones is checking text messages. Completely unprofessional a sure-fire way of losing students very quickly. Wear a watch, stay on time, and look professional.
7. Take an interest in what your kids do outside of tennis
What separates the most successful coaches from the masses? it can be a bit of luck, being in the right place at the right time but more often than not its purely up to a coach’s ability to retain clients. Build a professional relationship, and start with showing the client that you care. As the old saying goes, Nobody cares how much you know, until they know how much you care. Theodore Roosevelt. Biography. Author Profession: President. Nationality: American.
8. Keep it simple
Focus on one or two key points for each lesson. It might seem like giving students lots of information shows them that they are getting a lot of bang for their buck but if they leave the session confused they are less likely to return.
9. Be prompt
Time is money: Emailing and calling clients back can feel annoying overwhelming but its essential business. Get back to clients as soon as possible, new inquiries are not going to sit around waiting days for you to call back.
10. Take the role
Even those with the best memory forget things now and then. Having accurate records ensures you can rely on facts when clients question the number of lessons they have missed/attended. Outside of COVID19 mandates, it’s a good idea to know who is on-site at any given moment for health and safety measures.