I’ve been hanging around sports people lately and must say, they are a different lot. I’m speaking of people who volunteer in the area of sports.
First, they’re incredibly enthusiastic. They have energy to burn and are eager to share their passion. They come with a variety of backgrounds and skills, but a common love of sports or a particular sport.
What has been most interesting is that they will show up, pitch in, and even take over an event, in spite of the lack of clarity or organization provided by the official event coordinators. With little explanation as to the nature of an event, these volunteers will show up. They will quickly assess the situation and either join in to add people-power or, depending on their experience and expertise, get the thing going in the right direction. They invite themselves in and before you know it they are part of a core team.
It surprises me that there is little conflict with event management but it appears that in the melee that is one of these sports events, the official coordinators so quickly lose the ball, so to speak, that they are either thankful for the help or hardly aware it is happening. At the end of the day, all celebrate together the event’s success, no matter how big or small.
With my business and process background, I am distressed at the lost opportunity to do something great with these events – to maximize the impact and ensure each year benefits from the last. But then I look at these sports volunteers and think that maybe there’s merit in just getting it done for now.