A big part of parenting is volunteering your time to support your children in their after school and weekend activities. With limited time in the day, this isn’t always easy. I was recently asked to coach my 8 year old son’s soccer team and because I felt a sense of obligation, I agreed. And because I pretty much always have my lean hat on these days, I couldn’t help but notice errors to the whole process.
For example, it was difficult to get basic information about my overall responsibilities from the league director. What type of time commitment did this mean? When were practices/games? Would they supply basic equipment? Lesson plans? What else did I need to know? It took several email exchanges before I got answers. No wonder the league has struggled to get volunteers!
I realized, I could get frustrated and decide not to coach my son’s team or I could work with the other coaches to fill what was clearly a communications gap. Some of us could see it, some of us couldn’t. Wouldn’t a standard document with all the basic information a volunteer coach need make things easier?
I soon discovered that the league at least had all the lesson plans created for each week posted online. The plans were exactly what I needed for practice and clearly illustrated not only the drills and how long to review each drill, but what the purpose was, too, which allowed me to give the players a better understanding why these drills were so important.
I’ve heard our fearless leader at LEI, John Shook, say, “Lean leadership isn't a matter of position, it's a matter of action. Action that can be taken at any level, in any situation.” I know I can help my son’s soccer league with communications, and they already have some lean tools in place for other things. But I wonder, how does one go about creating change in a place where they really have no power?