Posted in Coaching

Team Selection Notification

Yesterday was the final trials for the ACT U19’s Women’s Volleyball squad which I am coaching for nationals later in the year. Apparently this year Volleyball ACT has decided that the best process to use for announcing the team and notifying the players of their position is through their website. While in theory this is a good concept it seems to have been more of a concern for most of my team, and like the other teams going through selections.

I let all the girls know that this was the case, but also gave them the option of coming to me and having a one on one discussion regarding their place in the squad (or not). When given this option all bar 3 of the girls trialling (that were present at the final trial) came to me wanting to know if they made the team and also wanting more information about their roles or personal expectations.

This made me wonder what the best option for letting people know if they have made a team or not. While the logic behind an online notification process is sound; it means that there will be far less confrontation between girls that selected or not, it also limits the information that they can be given to further progress in the future. I have since decided that the best way is to now add in a individual letter to each of the girls. This would mean for the girls that are selected for the competition, those that just had a train-on role in the squad and those that were not selected to continue training. This way they can be given feedback (or feed-forward depending on your perspective) regarding what they should improve in the future so that they gain selection, or the skills that they need to develop before the competition. It will also give the opportunity to maintain lines of communication with those that may otherwise fall away and not return in the future which is once of the biggest issues in women’s volleyball, and female sport in general.

Having selected my team, I am confident that those continuing in the squad are the most likely to succeed at the competition and develop into the future, and hopefully those that missed out this year will be motivated to improve and come back next year to trial.



This blog was started for a Uni subject, and has since evolved into a place where I can voice my thoughts, typically about coaching and sport. I grew up in Sydney, then moved to Canberra for some further study in 2011 and when I finished in 2014 I moved up to Brisbane. I have played, coached and generally been involved with volleyball since 2013. As of 2017 I am now the QAS Volleyball Assistant Coach.

2 thoughts on “Team Selection Notification

  1. Chris, I like the way you dealt with this issue. Your post is exactly the kind of reflection that enhances the unit for me.

    I will try to resolce the Storify issue. This post appears there.

  2. I use the “Eldo Method”. I tell them at the end of training. Successful players leave the room and see the manager about admin details (they can celebrate out of earshot of disappointed players). I stay behind and talk to anyone that wants feedback (I think if you cut someone it should be face-to-face). I also make sure I have a detailed selection process with criteria, scoring and weightings and have my report and rationale ready before I announce the team. This doesn’t always save you. At the end of the day, if someone’s pissed, no amount of due process will stop them from kicking up a fuss – a fuss which as coach you have to put time into fixing instead of spending it on the individuals who you are supposed to help succeed. I’ve seriously had the “I don’t want to be Libero even though I’ll get more playing time” problem. It is hard to get “buy in” from a player to train if they’re not going to compete. Ultimately, the players that won’t “suck it up” and take the opportunity to get better or play the role asked of them in a team ultimately aren’t going to be the sort of people that will help teams succeed.

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