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This time of year during the football season can be quite chaotic. Looking to bring in new players and letting go of current players can go one of two ways.
There’s recently been a lot of media attention around an incident regarding a manager informing a player of their dismissal via text. For the record, I completely disagree with this method of communication when it comes to player dismissal.
I would be interested in hearing others’ opinions of this and also what communication methods are used when it comes to sensitive matters like this.
I am a Level 3 RFU rugby coach in a paid position. I can think of no other method of communicating, what is essentially bad news, in a worse light than this. It is my policy to talk to players face to face when I have to tell them that they are dropped, In my opinion, communicating in this manner, Text, is insensitive, to a certain extent shows a lack of respect, and generally shows to players that the coach basically does not have what it takes to deal with these situations. I always ensure that any player being dropped is informed before any squad announcement. My policy is to ask the player how he thinks that he is performing. They know if they are not up to speed, and will probably say something that will give the coach a natural,'In' in order to discuss the bad news. To me, you have to soften the blow, as it were, and I have found that by asking them, it seems to work. One should not forget that when a coach says he needs a word, the player really knows what is coming. In my experience, players will respect you as a coach by using this method. As I always say," You may well not agree with what I am telling you, and in many ways you shouldn't, but the decision has been made honestly". It therefore follows that by talking face to face, honesty is being displayed by the coach. In my view, honesty, whether the coach is right, or wrong, is the most important building block between coach and squad. How can any coach, in a team environment, expect any empathy with his players if you communicate by text ? .
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