Four key coaching candidate questions

Mark over at the blog At Home on the Court has a post which talks about questions which get asked – or should get asked – in the process of hiring a coach. Those questions are:

1. Where is the game now and where is it going?

2. How will your teams play?

3. What is the balance between being competitive now and being competitive in the future?

4. How will you lead?

Notice how all the questions on this list are philosophy ones? Also, they’re pretty forward-looking. They are well worth being ones you can answer without much hesitation if you’re coaching. Granted, there is necessarily some influence in how you respond which derives from the coaching role you are in, or are pursuing. Priorities do tend to come down from above for most of us. As a coaching job candidate, though, you should have enough familiarity with the team/club/school you are interviewing at that you can account for those priorities.

I’ll be honest. Coaching philosophy isn’t something that came up much when I was talking about prospective coaching jobs in the past. Mostly it was about knowing if I was qualified and was going to abide by the rules. Read the sorts of volleyball job postings you see at places like the NCAA website and you’ll see what I mean. It behooves you, however, to try to get some idea of philosophy expectations from your would-be boss(es) to make sure a given position is in fact a good fit for your style of coaching.

John Forman
About the Author: John Forman

John currently coaches for an NCAA Division II women’s team. This follows a stint as head coach for a women’s professional team in Sweden. Prior to that he was the head coach for the University of Exeter Volleyball Club BUCS teams (roughly the UK version of the NCAA) while working toward a PhD. He previously coached in Division I of NCAA Women’s Volleyball in the US, with additional experience at the Juniors club level, both coaching and managing, among numerous other volleyball adventures. Learn more on his bio page.

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