College football season has just started. I was working up front at the players’ window, that way if a player needed anything I would be able to provide them with help and give away any necessary gear in which they needed for practice.
My job was to provide the players with whatever they needed for practice. Certain items I can give away as needed such as socks, shorts, or shirts. I also fix any type of equipment issues dealing with helmets or shoulder pads if necessary before practice begins.
A player came up to me right before practice telling me that someone had just stolen his cleats. I know that practice is just about to start so I ask him what size cleat he wears and got him what he needed in order to practice.
My boss saw me give away the cleats and was furious. He laid into me about how I shouldn’t have given away the new cleats because the players had just been given a new pair of cleats the other day. I really didn’t know how to react and I felt like I had done the right thing in order to get the player on the practice field with the proper gear. Yet I was angry for being yelled at about the situation and disappointed that I didn’t completely think any of my actions through.
I was in my office getting ready to go out to the practice field.
As the football equipment manager I am responsible for providing our player’s with the proper gear/equipment in order for them to play at the highest possible level. I also need to make sure that we maintain a certain amount of inventory that way we will have enough gear (socks, shorts, cleats, etc.) to last the entire season.
Right before I’m about to head out to the practice field I see one of my student equipment managers giving away a new pair of cleats to a player. I immediately get upset at what he is doing because we can’t just give away gear if we have it in stock, there needs to be a valid reason for us to give it away. Plus at this point of the season I know that each player has been given several pairs of cleats to practice in.
I am upset with my student equipment manager and yell at him for doing so and put him in his proper place. I explain to him not only that we need to maintain a proper inventory but also tell him to come up with some type of procedure to go through before giving away certain gear that way we can determine if giving away more gear is necessary. I’m disappointed now about what happened but I’m sure that he will follow the correct steps next time should this type of incident occur again or at least ask me before doing so.
The use of strategic planning will help me “design a system in which will help achieve the organizations long- range goals” (Hitt, Black, and Porter, 3rd ed., p.11) In doing this I will be able to explain to the player’s and my boss how new gear is given out. It will also regulate how and when new gear will be received by a player if they follow simple tasks such as locking their locker and not bringing the gear given to them home so they can use it for practice.
By also applying operational planning I would be able to have a better understanding of what types of gear can be given out freely (such as socks, shirts, and shorts) compared to other gear which is rarely given away (such as cleats and visors). This type of structure also helps guide me as to when I should ask permission from my boss for getting certain gear and helps regulate our inventory even more.
“A formal communication channel will give a route that the organization authorizes, plans, and regulates what is directly connected to the organization’s official structure.” (Hitt, Black, and Porter, 3rd ed., p. 308) With this type of structure I am able to ask players a series of questions to ensure that they are taking care of their gear and see if they are deserving of getting new gear. This also helps me have a better communication with my boss in giving him valid reasons for gear being given away.
By having a set route in how to deal with players I can explain my procedure to them so that we are on the same page. This will not only motive them to keep better track of their gear but also make the process of me being able to help them go over more smoothly. An example of this would be me trading them their damaged gear for new gear. That way both sides are happy as they receive the gear that they want and I know that the giving away of the gear was necessary.
I learned through this experience that when dealing with others at the work place I act very closed and one tracked minded when put in certain situations. I feel as if I act this way towards others because they come to me with the same questions and issues everyday and act as if my response is going to change when it remains the same. Truth is I need to be more understanding of the other person and their point of view so that things can be done correctly the first time around and so that our communication between one another is not lost in the process.
The next time a situation like this occurs I understand that I need to have a talk with my boss looking for guidance on how to handle the situation. That way I know whether he disapproves or approves of the choice that I was going to make. I will also work hard to make sure that I have control over my attitude that way I don’t get discourage over the situation or cause anyone else to be discouraged as well such as my boss or a player. Basically think before I act on something and hear out all the sides of the story before making a final decision.
I now have a better understanding on how to deal with other people and make it so that everyone can be happy. I have to be able to consider other people’s motives as well as my own and work towards a common ground in which we can both be satisfied, such as asking for permission before giving away certain gear. Also I understand know that before taking any type of action I need to evaluate the entire situation and take in all of the details and not just act on what someone says but consider the facts that I know to be true as well and then take all of that information into making my inal decision.
I now know how to handle myself if this situation were to come up again in the work place and also how to prevent it from occurring as well. I never realized until recently how important listening to others views and perspectives were so vital in understanding an issue as a whole. With this type of outlook on any situation and good self control of my attitude there should be no reason for both sides to come out of the situation satisfied.
By: Russell PhilippMy Perspective
Equipment Room Right Before Practice @ Player Window
Provide Players with proper equipment Maintain a decent inventory
Give player new pair of cleats Boss chews me out