Your 2010 season is either over or there may be playoff and tournament games ahead before the equipment is put away for the year. In the back of your mind you have been wondering where you will land next season Parent and Player Strategies for the 2011 Season and Beyond—Part 1 of 2
Looking for the best development situation is important. Here are questions that need to be addressed as you look forward. I have written this to parents, but the same questions need to be asked, and answered, by the player. Parents should ask…
Questions to ask team representatives who inquire about your son…
1. What role do you project him in next season and over his career with you? (Need to be compatible with the type of player you are).
2. What will be his competition for this role? (Returning players, drafts, trades, etc.)
3. What are the education opportunities with your organization? (Get a read on how serious a team is about the importance of education).
4. What costs are covered by the team; what costs will be our responsibility? (Don’t be shy about this area. This needs to be addressed and now is a good time).
5. Can you send us your information in an email? (This should provide clarity and eliminate having to remember who said what).
6. Do you have a business card? (There are impostors out there).
7. Are you the contact person if we have additional questions? (There likely will be follow up questions. You need to deal with decision makers and not go down the road with a team rep not in a position to back up comments or promises).
Questions you need to ask yourself…
1. What are our goals here; for education–for hockey–for life? (This step is THE starting point. You have to know where you are going).
2. Am I prepared to put an action plan in place to meet these goals? (Every action going forward needs to align with your set goals).
3. Where will we have the best development environment? (Development is the focus).
You will need to do homework in a number of areas, based on the answers received to your questions. Go to sources you respect and cross reference where possible. Getting accurate information is important. This will go a long way to creating the best opportunity for the 2011 season.
3. Have a ‘worst case scenario’ in place. (This may be as basic as returning to your present team., as long as this is an acceptable development situation)
4. Be prepared to commit to a team—and be prepared to honor your commitment. (After all questions have been answered and all the home work has been done on opportunities, you will have to make a decision).
5. Be sure to have fun and enjoy the process. The universe will unfold in due course.
Now it is time to put the action plan in place and spend the off season getting ready for a successful 2011 season.