How to use Social Media to Your Team’s Advantage

Today almost everyone is on Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter. People use social media to find out news, weather, and pop culture updates. It is no surprise that potential athletes, competitors, and fans are now using social media to find out about your team.

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In my years coaching cheerleading I have found that using social media has been a great way for our team to support the school’s teams, additionally I have found that is a great way to promote my own team as well. I regularly use Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram to showcase our skills, which gains followers and in turn emails to me about our spirit program. Here are several ways I use social media to promote Tech’s Spirit Program, as well as our school’s other teams.

 

1. Photo Challenge Every Day – Each day I send a hashtag challenge to my athletes and ask them to send me a photo demonstrating it. This has become a fun tradition for our team, it encourages my athletes to take pride in our school, and it also is a great way to encourage other Tech fans to use our hashtag.

Examples: #TechPrideTuesday, #ThrowbackThursdayTechCheerEdition, #TechFootballFriday, #SoarWithUsSaturday

soar

2.  Support Your Fellow Teams- Twitter is a great way to show support to your fellow athletic teams. I regularly send tweets to other Tech teams wishing them luck in their games. It is a great way to build a sense of community and to also get supporters back for your own team.

twitter

  1. Recruiting – Potential athletes use social media to scope out your team. It’s a great way to advertise your program, and attract the type of athletes you want, plus it’s free! Posting information on my teams on social media has helped me to double the try out pool, and also allows me to post up to the minute updates on our team.

tryouts

 

 

These are just a few of the ways that I utilize social media for college essay for sale the betterment of my team. Additionally, having a team social media account gives you the option to monitor your athlete’s online activity. This is really helpful in making sure that your athletes are serving as positive ambassadors to your program/school.

 

I recommend making at least one post per day to gain a following. I also recommend having a consistent voice on social media. I personally post everything for my teams. If that is something that you are not interested in doing, you can appoint a social media captain on your team. Have this athlete be in charge of posting for your team, make sure to set ground rules with them first, and you should still monitor their posts on a daily basis.

 

Be sure to follow our Twitter @TTU_SpiritSquad, and Instagram pages Tennessee Tech Cheer, and TTU Dance Team, and Like our Facebook pages Tennessee Tech Cheerleading, Tennessee Tech Dance Team for updates on our season and examples on how I use social media for the TTU Spirit Program.

Intrinsic vs. Extrinsic

I recently completed a creativity course that compelled the class to discuss how they individually were motivated. Some of the class members found that they were extrinsically motivated. The individuals found that money, status, or children motivated them. In addition, a majority found they had intrinsic motivation fueled by their own will. I found that this was comparable to student-athletes today. What motivates them and does this cause the team to be less or more successful? Can this be more common on a team that is a public or private institution? If this is the case, this can directly relate to the happiness of the coach or the expectations that they have.
Looking at past dynamics of teams that I have coached, which has only been private, there has been a high presence of individuals that needed to be extrinsically motivated. This is an assumption that this could be due the price of the institutions that the student-athletes attend. It could also be what type of student that was recruited. I also contemplate whether this is due to being fully funded or not concerning scholarship counts. This could affect the level of competition that is present on the team.
Public institutions have the ability to find student-athletes that are more likely to be intrinsically motivated. The cost of the institutions is usually less than that of a private institution. Are the students looking at the school due to the academic portion or more for the athletic program? If a student-athlete always has competition at practice, the student-athlete must be intrinsically motivated to further their development or surpassed by other student-athletes.
The discussion is not about private vs. public institutions for coaching; but rather what type of motivation makes a team and whether this would be more prevalent at a public or private institution. If this is true, how can coaches create a culture that promotes intrinsic motivation for student-athletes to be the best student-athlete that they can be.

A Troubling Development for Women Coaches

In December of 2014, I wrote a blog about the firing of Shannon Miller. I’m posting the beginning of the blog here, with a link to the full post as I think it is important to document and call attention to what colleague Pat Griffin recently called “college athletics’ war on women coaches.

 

Some of you may not know who Shannon Miller is, but those of us in The State of Hockey (Minnesota) do. Shannon Miller was a highly successful women’s hockey coach at University of Minnesota-Duluth where her teams have won five NCAA championships, she developed 28 current and former Olympians, and amassed a .713 winning percentage. I say “was” because on 12/16/2014 Miller was fired in the middle of her season (her contract was not renewed for 2015-16) because from the way it sounds, she got paid too much. Miller was the highest paid women’s hockey coach in the country at $215,000, largely because she is one of the best. Miller’s counterpart, the head men’s hockey coach at UMD makes $235,000, and still has his job.

Shannon Miller, Head Women's Hockey Coach, U of MN-Duluth

Shannon Miller, Head Women’s Hockey Coach, U of MN-Duluth

In a story posted on MPR Athletic Director Josh Berlo was quoted as saying, “She established a winning program, raised it to the highest level of competition and sustained a national championship tradition over the last 15 years (credit franzkowiak). Today’s decision about Shannon’s contract was an immensely difficult and financially driven decision. Unfortunately, UMD Athletics is not in a position to sustain the current salary levels of our women’s hockey coaching staff.”

 

Let me point out a few things about Berlo’s decision that just don’t add up.

To read my argument, click here.

To follow updates on Miller and her staff, “like” the Reinstate Shannon Miller Facebook page.

Life Lessons

Athletics is a great teaching tool; for coaches as well as their players. Sometimes we coaches forget that it’s as important for us to learn from our experiences as it is to help our players grow. I learned several things as a head coach that you can’t know until you sit in the big chair and I use these lessons in my daily life.

 

Winning Is Important But… Winning or losing games should not define who you are as a person. And even though that should apply to everyone I would venture to say that coaches who don’t win many games say that much more than those who do. No matter how you rationalize it, it is awful when you lose. You feel horrible when you put your heart and soul into something and it doesn’t turn out the way you imagined. But you know what? Life isn’t fair. I read a great quotation from the speaker Tony Robbins, “Expecting the world to treat you fair because you are a good person is like expecting a bull not to charge you because you are a vegetarian.” So win or lose, live your life.

 

Have a Strong Sense of Self. Everyone will think they can coach your team better than you. You need thick skin in the coaching profession (and in life). Go to work every day and try to do the right thing. But never, ever base your opinion of yourself on someone else’s perception of you.

 

Try Not to Make the Same Mistake Twice. Nobody is perfect. We all make mistakes. And even though it doesn’t feel good mistakes help us grow. Learn from those mistakes. I always think of the saying “Insanity is doing the same thing over and over again and expecting a different result.” Don’t be stubborn and think you are always right. It’s okay to admit when you are wrong. It’s okay to be human.

 

Try Not to Make a Mistake So Big it Ruins Your Career. We all have that inner voice telling us when things aren’t right. Listen to it. It only takes one small indiscretion to ruin a career. Be smart.

 

Forgive Yourself. You are not always going to do or say the right things so lighten up on yourself. Many a night I lay awake worried because of something I said to a kid or the way I handled a situation only to go to work the next day and the kid had either forgotten, moved on, or forgiven me. Don’t beat yourself up. It’s wasted energy you could be using elsewhere in a more productive way.

 

Appreciate The Good Times. Coaches forget to “live life” sometimes. After games I let myself enjoy the win only for the amount of time it took to ride the bus home and then my thoughts immediately went to what I needed to do for the next game.  There were times that, although I was extremely happy for and proud of my players and their performance, I didn’t allow myself to fully experience any of their joy. I think about that and hope that in the future I won’t forget to be “present” in the moment.

 

Relax. If you’re doing all that you can your dedication will make you successful eventually, whether it’s with what you are doing now or something else. Don’t be discouraged by failure. It’s better to try and fail than to sit and wonder what could have been “if only…”

 

Have Patience. Not everything is going to happen when you think it should. Everyone has a schedule in their head of how their career should progress. Guess what? You’re not always in control! Robin Roberts had a great quote, “God’s delays are not His denials”. We don’t always get what we want when we want it. Sometimes what we want isn’t supposed to happen. Often our destiny is greater than we could ever imagine. We just need to get out of our own way to achieve it.

 

Keep Knocking. So many times people give in to doubt when they encounter obstacles; some literal, some figurative, many created by themselves. Whenever I feel passionate about something I pursue it even though I may have doubts. I believe that if something is on my mind and in my heart every day, then there is a reason for that. So when one door closes I keep “knocking” until the one I need opens.

 

Enjoy. Being a coach is a privilege, an honor, and a blessing. Be grateful you get to do what you love even though the path is not always smooth. And be sure to remember that on your worst day, when nothing goes right, there is always someone worse off.

 

www.hmwsportsconsulting.com

@coachlikamother

 

 

 

 

 

 

Recruiting 101

Here are a few recruiting tips to keep in mind while you are looking for that special player who can change your program:

#1-Never Work at a Place or for a Coach You Don’t Believe In.

#2-Know the Mission of Your Institution.

#3-Always Be Honest.

#4-Stick To Your Principles.

#5-Be Professional.

#6-Have the Recruit’s Best Interest at Heart.

#7-Recruit Kids with Good Character.

#8-Recruiting Is Cyclical. Plan 2 classes ahead.

#9-Do Not Negative Recruit.

#10-Be Gracious in Defeat.

Recruiting is not rocket science. Work hard. Work efficient. You may  not always get what you want, but you will get what you need.

www.hmwsportsconsulting.com

@coachlikamother

Tips on How to Stay Organized in the Workplace

Simply like birth certificates and marriage licenses , divorce decrees and certifications are records that are vital . Determine whether you need a replica of the divorce decree or a breakup certificate before you attempted to to obtain a copy of divorce papers . The previous , a court decree , ends the union and includes particular terms about the divorce , for example guardianship conclusions and house division . A breakup certification only states the names of the spouses and also the the state ending date of the wedding . Having the Decree or Certificate It is possible to usually obtain a divorce decree from your parish clerk ‘s office in the region in which the divorce was granted , even though in case your divorce occurred some time ago , it could be ” aged ” — delivered to a central state archive . You must contact the agency managing the vital records in your state , to get a copy of a divorce certificate . By way of example , in Iowa , it is the state Division of Environment and Health . You’ll have to supply identification , such as passport or a driver’s license , in addition to information verifying your address , such as letters or recent utility bills from a board . Expect to pay a a payment for for the document . Other people must possess a state court order while both of the partners can get copies of divorce papers , in certain states , such as New York .

Tips on How to Stay Organized in the Workplace

Simply like birth certificates and marriage licenses , divorce decrees and certifications are records that are vital . Determine whether you need a replica of the divorce decree or a breakup certificate before you attempted to to obtain a copy of divorce papers . The previous , a court decree , ends the union and includes particular terms about the divorce , for example guardianship conclusions and house division . A breakup certification only states the names of the spouses and also the the state ending date of the wedding . Having the Decree or Certificate It is possible to usually obtain a divorce decree from your parish clerk ‘s office in the region in which the divorce was granted , even though in case your divorce occurred some time ago , it could be ” aged ” — delivered to a central state archive . You must contact the agency managing the vital records in your state , to get a copy of a divorce certificate . By way of example , in Iowa , it is the state Division of Environment and Health . You’ll have to supply identification , such as passport or a driver’s license , in addition to information verifying your address , such as letters or recent utility bills from a board . Expect to pay a a payment for for the document . Other people must possess a state court order while both of the partners can get copies of divorce papers , in certain states , such as New York .