Coaching / High School Sports / Communication

High School and Middle School Coaches

Here’s an idea . . .

Mark McMillion
2 min readJun 9, 2024

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This isn’t what I actually look like. Yet. Image designed by Wannapik.

As a seasoned leader of over thirty years, here’s my advice for how to run a successful season:

Plan. Build a schedule of practices and other activities like weightlifting, conditioning, fundraisers, teambuilders, etc. This should be completed no later than six weeks after the end of the season.

Communicate. Put it in writing, either hard copy or digits. Share it with parents and athletes. Bonus points if you have a meeting and talk them through it. Parents, believe it or not, sometimes have other things to do than simply support your program. Sometimes they have other kids in other activities. Heck, some of them may even have jobs or want to plan summer vacations. Many will plan around existing activities when they know them well in advance. I won’t speak for others here, but when you spring a spaghetti dinner or car wash on us with two weeks’ notice and hand my kid a fistful of tickets to sell? I’m annoyed at the least and much less inclined to help sell tickets and volunteer to help at the dinner. Give me six weeks’ notice and I’ll move tickets and volunteer. Give me ten months’ notice? I’ll run the whole thing for you.

Execute. Stick to the plan. When it says weightlifting on Mon-Wed-Fri, 5–6:30, be there. If not you, then an assistant. If not an assistant, then a volunteer you trust. But don’t message everyone at 4:30 and say it’s cancelled. You want to schedule something last minute? Ask the parents. It’s not the kids who are going to get everyone there, provide a case or two of water, snacks, etc.

It ain’t rocket science. Oh yeah, you’ll probably win more if you do this as well.

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Mark McMillion

Retired Army officer with two tours in Baghdad, married with four kids. Proud West Virginian and West Point grad. Works available on Amazon.