1. Create an Issues List: Whether it’s a whiteboard in your office or in the locker room, or a digital document; create a place where players and coaches can write down any issues that come up during the week, then resolve them during the Captain’s Council Meeting.
2. Create a Tasks List: Delegate tasks (i.e., chores) each week to the players but allow captains to select which ones their units will be responsible for during the week.
3. Stay Consistent: It’s absolutely vital to hold this meeting once a week, otherwise issues will pile up. If everything is going really well, then you can use this meeting to celebrate your team’s successes.
4. Work Towards a Consensus But Prepare to “Agree to Disagree”: When resolving an issue, if you can’t come to a decision by consensus, then revisit it in a couple of days. However, after you revisit it, if there is still no consensus, then you will have to move forward and “agree to disagree”.
5. Review Upcoming Week: Captains can be responsible for knowing the plan for the week and giving input on certain activities, while communicating the plan and schedule to their teammates.
6. Plan Something Fun: Each week, you can have them add their favorite drill to the practice plans, plan a team get-together, or plan something fun for the whole team to do before or after practice.
7. Have Fun: Don’t take yourself too seriously. Play a game to start practices, make jokes, or bring food.
8. Sit at a Table or in a Circle: This keeps everyone focused. Obviously, no phones are allowed.
9. Rotate the “Chairperson”: If you feel like you tend to dominate the meeting, then get the captains to lead the meeting instead. Work with them to create the agenda.
10. Start with Compliments or Gratitude: It might seem silly or juvenile at the start but just taking the time to compliment another person in the group or expressing your gratitude can start things off on a positive note.
11. Focus on Solutions: While it’s important to discuss why issues are arising and to express frustrations, it’s most important to move towards solutions instead.
12. Do a Standards Review: If an area of the program is struggling, then instead of doing a standards review as a team (i.e., identifying what is unacceptable/“below the line” and exceptional/“above the line”), it can be more empowering to do the review with your captains, and then get them to come up with solutions to communicate and raise those standards with their teammates.
13. Create a Motto or Mantra: It should be repeated at the start and end of every meeting. Here are some examples:
a. How we do anything is how we do everything.
b. Love more; judge less.
c. F.A.M.I.L.Y.: Forget About Me; I Love You
d. Leaders call people up, not out.
Implementing and effectively running the Captain’s Council within your team is a powerful way to not only develop leaders, but to increase the chances everyone in your program feels seen, known, and cared for.
The training will help you to with the following process:
- Selecting Captains
- Empowering Captains
- System Execution
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