One of the keys to the success of your youth sports organization is putting the right head coach in place. The right coach will help your club attract and retain players and allow athletes to take their skills to the next level. However, hiring this person can be easier said than done. To secure your club’s next head coach, it is important to ask the right questions during the interview process.
Take a look at some questions you can ask during an interview to ensure you are hiring the right coach.
Why are you interested in this position?
This will tell you what the candidate’s motivation is in pursuing this coaching position, and how familiar he or she is with your organization. It will also reveal if the person did their homework before the interview, which could tell you how passionate they are about getting this job.
What skills do you possess that would make you successful in this role?
How the candidate answers this question will reveal how much he or she understands the job and what it takes to be a youth coach. It will also show if the skills they prioritize match your organization’s mission and values.
How would you describe your coaching style?
This can demonstrate how well he or she fits the club’s mission. It will show how competitive the coach is. It will also reveal how hands-on he or she is with players and how dedicated he or she is to developing youth players’ skills.
How do you ensure all players feel included in the team?
This will show how the candidate relates to youth athletes. It can also demonstrate how much experience he or she has working with young players and dealing with the psychological side of sports.
How do you deal with difficult parents?
One of the coach’s most difficult tasks can be dealing with parents. To keep the club successful and retain athletes, it is important for coaches to strike the right balance between letting parents give feedback and causing disruptions to the club. How the candidate answers this question will reveal his or her philosophy on parent involvement, and what experience he or she has in resolving conflicts with parents.
In the past, what are some examples of how you kept athletes motivated during the season?
This will demonstrate how well he or she can relate to athletes to keep them engaged in the season – and the club. The candidate’s answer will also reveal how creative the coach is and how willing he or she is to create a good team culture that players want to be part of.
What is the most difficult part of being a youth sports coach?
Asking this question will show how realistic the coach is about the role and how much experience the candidate has with adversity. It will also demonstrate how motivated he or she is to work through difficult situations to make the season a positive experience.
What is the most difficult decision you had to make as a youth sports coach?
This will show you how the candidate deals with tough situations. You can also ask the coach how he or she came to the decision. That can help determine if his or her techniques will fit with your organization’s mission and values.
Describe one of your most successful moments as a youth sports coach.
How the candidate answers this will show how passionate he or she is about being a youth sports coach, and what he or she prioritizes. If the coach mentions a victory, it could show that he or she only measures success in terms of game outcomes. If the candidate gets excited about coaching a player through a difficult situation or developing players’ skills, then it will show that he or she values helping kids grow their talents and achieve personal successes.
If you were offered this role, what would you need from the club’s administrators to be successful?
The answer to this question will show you how much the coach expects from the club’s director and other members of the board. For example, it will reveal if he or she needs a large budget, new equipment or technology, a large coaching staff, and other elements that will need to be considered when determining if the coach will be a good fit for the club.
While there are no right or wrong questions to ask during a head coaching interview, the questions – and the candidate’s answers – will help reveal the person’s character and values. Make sure you ask the questions that will give you the answers you need to determine if the candidate is the right coach for your organization.
TeamGenius is a youth sports player evaluation mobile app and website to streamline tryouts for youth sports programs. Our player evaluation software covers everything from player check-in to analyzing results and placing players on teams after tryouts.