The Coaches Evaluation Form…should you participate?

Do you think coaching evaluation forms are safe?  When I first started filling out this form I felt like I was being given a voice and someone was going to hear me.  If I had a valid complaint or concern I fill out the form whether hard copy or downloading it online and the organization could act on it if they chose.  If I wanted to really talk up a coach I could do that too!

Either way, it gave me the opportunity to discuss in a very confidential manner a particular coach or team issues without the coach, parents or kids knowing.  I would always try to be positive because something inside of me always said “caution.”   These forms were supposed to be helpful to the organization when it came time for selecting coaches for the following year or helping the coach determine what did work and what didn’t work that year.  They tell us the forms can be anonymous and are confidential.  That’s right, they tell us these are confidential forms only to be read by the organization’s board.

THAT’S A LIE!  DON”T BELIEVE IT!  RUN THE OTHER WAY!!!!!

Your coach will see the form at some point or will get a verbal relay of what is on the form.  Coaching forms are for chickens that are unable to voice their opinions directly to the coach.  Don’t get me wrong, I have used them myself when I could not make headway with a coach and wanted someone above them to know.  They never worked.  When there is an issue with a coach, the normal way of thinking is to get a group to voice their concern.  The more parents willing to voice their concerns on an evaluation form over a particular issue with a coach; the more likely something will be done about it.

Sounds very logical, but listen to me clearly!  Parents want other parents to do their dirty work.  I have been in that scenario one too many times!  You have a group of parents who feel like the coach is unfair with playing time, favoring other players, has unrealistic expectations of his/her players, drinks too much, swears too much, doesn’t communicate with parents and the list is a mile long.  During the final game you all agree, the “coaches evaluation form is the answer.”

The percentages are working against you.  Generally, not even 25% of those parents will do your dirty work thinking you are doing it for them.  Ya, get the picture, you get to be the complainer, the trouble maker, the one people frown upon.  Nobody wants to get caught, especially if you are on a select/premier team in which the core players are kept together from year to year.  I have known coaches to cut kids who have parents that rip them on the coaches evaluation form, you know the forms that the organization assured us no coach would ever see!  Trust me, it happened to my kid and me!  More on that story in another post.

Do yourself a favor – don’t try to accomplish what should be done in person through an evaluation form.  If you have something to say that is important enough to you and your kid, do it in person with the coach or club administrators.  It is better to confront than to hide behind an evaluation form.  There might be some ill feelings, but at least what you feel will be out on the table and you can have a much more open relationship with your coach and club.  Even if it feels uncomfortable, you and your kid will have a much stronger relationship with your coaches in the future.  Any thoughts?  Let us know if you have approached this in a different way or have some experiences to share.

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