Chapter 1: Suggested Actions

Suggested Actions Summary

  • If your sport does not collect gender in its coaching data, edit any admin processes to ensure going forward all data can be sorted by gender. This will help to identify if/when specific actions are required to address women in coaching in your sport.
  • Consult with stakeholders via surveys and focus groups; women coaches (active and inactive), coach developers, male coaches, administrators.
  • Create a Coaching Audit Template for your sport that collects the information suggested.
  • Ensure questions that relate to differences amongst women, e.g. ethnicity, disability, age etc. are included in data collection and surveys. Sports often only collect data separately and so are not tackling the problem intersectionally. Women of colour and /or women who are disabled will experience more complex issues than White women.
  • Consult and research other sports or your sport in other countries for resources.
  • Communicate to all members, staff and the Board that your sport is consulting with women coaches in order to develop a plan for increasing coaching numbers and supporting the development of coaches.
  • Issue an annual survey to coaches asking some of the questions outlined in this toolkit. Discover their motivations, barriers and challenges to coaching.
  • Create small focus group sessions with coaches to better understand them. These focus groups could be segregated into coaches of different levels, e.g. those coaching children, those coaching adults, those coaching at an elite level.
  • Establish a Women in Coaching Working Group in your organisation for your coaching project to guide, support and help define the goals and targets.
  • Work with others in the organisation, including those responsible for coach development where applicable, to set goals and targets.
  • Set goals that are not just focused on increasing numbers but also the standard of coach versus the demands the sport requires of the coach.
  • Design a template for the organisation that can be used to outline your plan.
  • Establish a Women in Coaching Action Plan for your organisation.
  • Communicate to all stakeholders to make them aware that your sport is developing a plan for increasing coaching numbers and supporting the development of  coaches.
  • Ensure the scoping out and researching phase is factored into the action plan.
  • Review your coaching pathway to ensure it represents female coaches and make it visible to them. E.g. female images used, increased communication and circulation of information regarding coaching courses, etc.
  • Provide regular updates to the Board of your organisation, including an; Introduction Brief (to explain the plan you are developing and why), Project Plan Brief (to present your action plan for women in coaching once developed), plus midway and conclusion updates as required.
  • For large organisations, stressing the importance to other staff and development officers on the information in this toolkit is vital. Host a staff webinar to outline your Action Plan for Women in Coaching, include them in the development of it or simply make them aware of the key points highlighted in this toolkit or in the Sport Ireland Women in Coaching Research Report.