Club Governance

Introduction

Governance is the system by which a club, team or league is controlled and how its resources are managed efficiently for the benefit of members and players.  It is about planning and leadership within the club to ensure performance both within the organisation and on the field of play. 
 

  • Planning: Developing goals and objectives and determining how these can be achieved.  An example of this would be a Development Plan.

  • Performance: Monitoring performance against targets set by the club.  These targets need to be sensible and reasonably achievable.

  • Leadership: The organisation needs to have a group that governs responsibly with the best interests of the membership at the centre of decision-making.

  • Rules: The organisation needs to have a set of rules by which the members abide for the good of all.

 

Benefits

No ambitious sports club can ignore 'best practice' governance.  A well-governed organisation will be able to meet opportunities and future challenges and will benefit through:

  • Better management: The organisation will have a well-managed and organised committee that have the support of the membership.

  • Better communication: A well-run organisation will provide good communication with its members, players and the local community.

  • Growth and sustainability: Careful and accurate planning and the introduction and implementation of good policies and procedures will help develop and sustain the organisation and the sport.

  • Increased membership: A well-run and well-organised club is more likely to attract new members than a poorly-organised club. Parents are more likely to enroll their children with a club that has attained accreditation and is well run.

  • Reputation: Through being well run, an organisation will develop a good reputation with members and partner organisations

 

Planning

What can planning do for your organisation:

  • Provide a common focus within the organisation.

  • Set out the organisation's goals and ambitions for all to see.

  • Allow individuals to contribute their strengths.

  • Avoid duplication.

  • Encourage cooperation between all the members of the organisation.

  • Ensure coverage of all issues and minimise any possible gaps in provision.

  • Establish priorities and determine who will tackle these requirements.

  • Maximise the use of limited resources to the full.

  • Support any funding applications, as a Development Plan is often asked for.

 

Performance

Once the planning phase has been completed you then need to monitor what you are doing to make sure you achieve what you set out to do.  Dates for the completion of projects will be in the Development Plan, as will the names of those responsible for overseeing the project.  Use these resources to monitor the projects.

 

Leadership - What does it involve?

The first and most important part of governance is to set up a small committee whose main job will be to ensure the organisation will function.  These are primarily the “Officers” of the organisation and usually include the Chairperson, Secretary and Treasurer and in the case of a Junior Club, the Child Welfare Officer. The “Officers” can be supported by other committee members and volunteers who will organise specific activities.

Here are five key questions that your organisation should be able to answer:

  • Where are you now?

  • Where do you want to get to?

  • When do you want to achieve it?

  • How will you do it? (And what are you going to need?)

  • Who will do it?

 

Rules

The club should have a set of rules.  These can be organised by members of the committee and need to be ratified by the full committee at an official meeting.  If there is a youth section, there should be a separate set of rules for young people.

 

Governance is...

  • Common sense.

  • Knowing what your responsibilities are.

  • Listening to your membership and responding to them.

  • Carefully monitoring activities and expenses.

  • Well-planned club meetings.

  • Developing basic risk management practices for the club and committee.

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