Sport and business

Michael O'Loughlin AFL star
Take the Challenge Michael O'Loughlin AFL Star

Lesson: This Sporting Business

Rationale

Sporting clubs, professional and community based, are made up of a wide variety of people. A successful club incorporates and utilises the different skills and leadership styles of its people to reach its goals.

This lesson gives students the meta-language with which to discuss leadership and employment at a professional sporting club, and gives them the opportunity to explore, discuss and debate the qualities that make a good leader.

Duration

A minimum of 150 minutes is recommended for this lesson.

Please note that the lesson duration should be adjusted according to students’ abilities and timetable considerations. Teacher’s discretion should be used in determining whether this lesson, and progressive extension activities, is delivered over a number of independent periods or multiple consecutive periods.

Venue

Classroom

Key Learning Areas

The key learning areas addressed in this unit are:

  • Humanities (careers)
  • English
  • Business studies
  • Interpersonal skills
  • Information communication and technology (extension activities).

Focus

This lesson encourages students to examine the roles of staff members, both on and off the field, who contribute to the daily running of sporting clubs.

Using a staff-recruiting focus, students will work in groups to decide on the appropriate people to fill employment positions at a newly established club. Once group choices are made students will need to present and justify their choices.

Aims

The aims of this lesson are:

  • To help students understand the diversity of roles and attributes that are required to run a successful sporting club
  • To help students identify positive leadership qualities in others.

Skills

During this lesson students will:

  • Exercise the art of negotiation when working in a group
  • Justify and debate their selections and choices
  • Critically analyse information
  • Be given the opportunity to work effectively in a group.

Modelling Leadership

The leadership qualities modelled by students during this lesson include:

  • Respect for themselves and others
  • Honesty and trustworthiness
  • Leading by example
  • Taking responsibility
  • Being enthusiastic
  • Involving others
  • Working well with others
  • Being good communicators.

Materials/Equipment

The following materials will be needed to complete this lesson:

  • Sport and Business Pro forma 1 — Organisational Structures
  • Sport and Business Pro forma 2 — Job Advertisements
  • Sport and Business Pro forma 3 — Profiles
  • Sport and Business Pro forma 4 — Leadership Attributes
  • Scissors, pens and paper.

Lesson Preparation

Prior to commencing the lesson teachers should ensure that:

  • Sport and Business Pro Forma 1 — Organisational Structures is copied as appropriate
  • Sport and Business Pro Forma 2 — Job Advertisements is copied for each group
  • Sport and Business Pro Forma 3 — Profiles is copied for each group
  • Sport and Business Pro Forma 4 — Leadership Attributes is copied for each member of the class
  • The classroom is configured to facilitate small group work.

Method

The following provides a plan on how to deliver this lesson. Teachers are encouraged to take a flexible approach and modify this lesson to suit the needs and abilities of their students.

  1. Form student groups (5 minutes). Form small groups of four or five students, allowing students to form their own groups or allocating students to groups.
  2. Introduce the concept of an ‘organisational structure’ (10 minutes). Have a brief discussion with the class, introducing the idea of an organisational structure. You might like to use your own school as an example of the ways in which responsibilities are distributed according to a defined hierarchical structure.
  3. Classify organisational departments (20 minutes). Distribute Sport and Business Pro Forma 1 — Organisational Structures and ask students to classify the organisational departments that might exist in a sporting club. Depending on the ability of your cohort, this task may be completed by students individually or in groups.
    Share the answers with the class. Be sure to ask students why they made the decision to place departments in the ways that they did. As a class, agree on an organisational structure to be used in the rest of this lesson. It may be useful to tease out, through further questioning, students’ understandings of terms and roles.
  4. Identify jobs and skills (10 minutes). Allocate one or more departments from the organisational structure to each group. Have the students identify the kinds of jobs that would be performed in that department. If your students have little knowledge of organisational structures you may choose to allocate to each groupa department that they may be familiar with, such as the Sport Department.
    Mass media coverage of sport, and students’ own experiences at their local clubs, means that most students are likely to be aware of the wide range of playing and non-playing roles that need to be undertaken by club personnel on match day. Staff would include coaching staff, playing staff, medical staff, fitness staff, property stewards, team managers, event staff, media staff, match-day officials, team statisticians and so on. Once they have identified the roles required in their departments, have the students name the specific skills and personal traits that would be necessary to undertake these jobs. For example, an assistant coach would work in the Sport Department, would need be a good communicator, able to work closely with players and show patience and persistence. Students who are members of local sporting clubs,  and who are familiar with these roles, can be asked to share their knowledge and experiences during this component of the lesson. It is important to stress the notion that everyone in the organisation has a leadership role to fulfil.
  5. Teacher option 1. You might like to make a class version of the chart that brings together students’ assessments.
  6. Teacher option 2. If your class has access to computers, students could complete all of the previous steps using the appropriate software.
  7. Students take on the challenge. Explain to students that a new professional sporting club has been formed, and that they will take on the challenge to recruit leadership personnel to ensure that this club is successful, on and off the field of play.
  8. Students select the appropriate personnel (15 minutes). Distribute Sport and Business Pro Forma 2 — Job Advertisements. Read through the job advertisements with the class to answer any  questions they might have, particularly about the language used in the advertisements. Explain that they will be given the task of selecting
    the appropriate personnel to fill the various leadership roles in this new organisation.
  9. Students consider applicant qualities (45 minutes). Distribute Sport and Business Pro Forma 3 Profiles - Job Applicants. Reinforce the requirement of the task and have students individually read through the profiles. Ask them to cut out each profile for ease of ranking. After considering the qualities and experience of each applicant, the group selects the best person for the job. Allow the students enough time to weigh up their decisions, and remind them that they will have to justify their choices. You might need to share with  certain groups some appropriate discriminators.
  10. Use the leadership checklist. After allowing for discussion, hand out Sport and Business Pro Forma 4 — Leadership Attributes. In some cases the guidance provided by his checklist will change the outcome for some groups.
  11. Report back (30 minutes). Each group is asked to report back to the whole class. They should be able to justify the decisions they have made and be able to explain in detail the qualities of each successful applicant.
    If there is discrepancy among the groups, hold a class vote to determine the most popular applicant. You may want to use the following list of qualities of a good leader as criteria for voting.
    • Respect for themselves and others
    • Honesty and trustworthiness
    • Leading by example
    • Taking responsibility
    • Being enthusiastic
    • Involving others
    • Working well with others
    • Being good communicators.
    Individual students may vote differently from their group in this instance. Explain that this is similar to a conscience vote in parliament.
  12. Reflect on learning (10 minutes). On the board, draw up an example of a ‘Y’ chart. The sections should be labelled ‘What does good leadership look like? ‘What does it do?’ and ‘Who benefits from it?’
    As a reflection on the learning that they have undertaken during the lesson, students should draw up and complete the ‘Y’ chart in their books.

Unit extensions

The following are possible teaching and learning extensions to this lesson.

  1. Visit an online recruitment service and investigate career opportunities at sporting organisations. Ask students to determine what qualities professional recruiters believe are important in these jobs. Then ask them to select three of their classmates whom they believe have the qualities these recruiters are looking for. They should justify their choices to the class by highlighting examples of how the chosen students model these qualities, in and out of school, and how their behaviour makes them right for the job.
  2. Devise the organisational map of your favourite team. Using the internet, ask students to compare their map with that of their favourite sporting team. Where are the discrepancies? Did this surprise them? To what position are they best suited? Ask them to state their case to the class.
  3. Using the internet, compare the organisational structures of two clubs in different sports. Are there anydifferences? Ask students to explain why, and present the outcomes to the class.
  4. Map the roles and structures of your local sporting club. Ask students to compare the roles and organisational structures they devised with that of a local sporting club. Are there any positions and roles they were not aware of? Students are to select three volunteers at their local club, talk to the class about their qualities and why these qualities make them suitable for their club roles.
  5. Ask students to devise a job advertisement for one of the jobs at a professional sporting club. In groups, ask students to conduct job interviews. During this activity students are to rotate the roles of interviewer and interviewee. The class, or group, grades or awards points to each interviewer and interviewee for leadership qualities displayed for the job.
  6. Extend work experience students. For students undertaking work experience, highlight the direct link between the listed leadership qualities and the types of qualities the students will need to demonstrate during their work placement. Humanities teachers could also be involved in this lesson by extending this topic further in their lessons, as students prepare to undertake their work experience.
  7. Students reflect on their own leadership qualities. This lesson focuses very heavily on fictional people and fictional job positions. As part of a reflection beyond this lesson, students might be encouraged to think about their own leadership qualities and what type of job they might be suited to in the field of sport. Ask them to construct a résumé and job application covering letter, outlining their qualities and why they should be employed. These documents could then be used to apply for the position.

My Club Challenge

An optional learning component of the Take the Challenge program is the My Club Challenge project. It is designed to provide middle secondary school students with a ‘real-life’ opportunity to model leadership in their community by working as volunteers at their local sporting club.

This innovative project gives students a chance to add value to their community by offering their time to clubs. In return they are able to partake in a unique personal development program designed to give them rich experiences in leadership and learning.

Sport and Business Unit — possible links to the My Club Challenge project

Students who undertake the My Club Challenge project can assist local sporting clubs in developing job criteria for leadership positions at the club. These criteria can be used to as a guide when recruiting personnel.

For more information about how your students can get involved in the My Club Challenge project, visit the My Club Challenge page or refer to the Take the Challenge CD-ROM accompanying this resource.

Lesson: This sporting business

Lesson date: Lesson time:
Lesson venue:

 Materials/equipment
The following materials will be needed to complete this lesson:

  • Sport and Business Pro Forma 1 — Organisational Structures (provided with lesson)
  • Sport and Business Pro Forma 2 — Job Advertisements (provided with lesson)
  • Sport and Business Pro Forma 3 — Profiles (provided with lesson)
  • Sport and Business Pro Forma 4 — Leadership Attributes (provided with lesson)
  • Scissors, pens and paper.
Lesson activity
Breakdown
Materials
Duration
150 mins
Form student groups
• Form small groups of four or five students.


Introduce the concept of an organisational
structure
• Have a brief discussion with the class, introducing the idea of an  organisational structure.

15 mins
Classify organisational
departments
• Distribute Sport and Business Pro Forma 1 — Organisational Structures.
• Ask students to classify the organisational departments that might exist in a sporting club
• Share the answers with the class
Sport and Business Pro
Forma 1 —
Organisational
Structures
20 mins
Identify jobs and skills
• Allocate each group one or more departments from the organisational structure
• Have the students identify the kinds of jobs that would be performed in that department
• Have students name the specific skills and personal traits that would be necessary to undertake these jobs
• It is important to stress the notion that everyone in the organisation has a leadership role to fulfil

10 mins
Students take on the challenge
• Explain to students that a new professional sporting club has been formed, and that they will take on the challenge to recruit leadership personnel to will ensure this club is successful, on and off the field of play


Students select the appropriate personnel
• Distribute Sport and Business Pro Forma 2 — Job Advertisements
• Explain to students that they will be given the task of selecting the right personnel to fill various leadership roles in this new organisation


Students consider applicant  qualities
• Distribute Sport and Business Pro Forma 3 — Profiles
• After considering the qualities and experience of each applicant, the group selects the best person for the job
Sport and Business Pro Forma 3 Profiles — Job Applicants
45 mins
Use the leadership checklist
• Hand out Sport and Business Pro Forma 4 — Leadership Attributes to assist students in making their choices
Sport and Business Pro Forma 4 — Leadership Attributes

Report back
• Each group is asked to report back to the whole class. Ensure that students justify the decisions they have made, and that they are able to explain in detail the qualities of each successful applicant

30 mins
Reflect on learning
• On the board, draw up an example of a ‘Y’ chart
• The sections should be labelled ‘What does good leadership look like?’, ‘What does it do?’ and ‘Who benefits from it?’
• Ask students to draw up and complete the ‘Y’ chart in their books

30 mins

Teacher notes


























 

Pro Forma 1 - Organisational structures

The club has reshuffled its management structure and roles, and all the departments need to be reassigned in its organisational chart. Your job is to put the department titles listed below back into their correct place in the chart provided. Some titles have already been inserted to start you off. Good Luck!

Department title

  • Club president
  • Players
  • Sport department
  • Finance department
  • Health and fitness staff
  • Administration department
  • Conditioning coach
  • Chief executive officer (CEO)
  • Venue management
  • Corporate and community services
  • Board
  • Head coach
  • Marketing
  • Membership
  • Administration
  • Assistant coaches
  • Schools officer
 

Some Tips

  • The club president is the head of the board
  • The administration department runs the business operations of the club
  • The head coach is not responsible for Venue management
 

Organisational_chart1_500x495
 

Teacher solution

Organisational_chart_499x500
 

Pro Forma 2 - Job advertisements

Job advertisement

COACH REQUIRED
JONESVILLE SPORTING CLUB

The Jonesville Sporting Club requires an enthusiastic and dedicated coach for its senior team.

The successful applicant will implement match-day strategies and match plans, as well as the club’s strategic plan.

You will be required to work collaboratively with, and direct, the assistant coaches. You must have substantial experience in the fitness, sport and leisure industry, be self-motivated and fully qualified.

Send your résumé and the names of three referees to The Club House, Smith Road, Jonesville.

 

 

 

 

Job advertisement

MARKETING MANAGER
JONESVILLE SPORTING CLUB

The Jonesville Sporting Club requires an enthusiastic and forward-thinking marketing  manager to raise the club’s profile and provide a link  between the media and the club.

The successful applicant will  implement marketing strategies and act in accordance with the club’s strategic plan. You will be required to have an understanding of communication needs, expectations, gaps and issues, and be able to shape solutions and innovative new approaches that maximise adoption of the club ethos. You will be required to work  collaboratively with all levels of the club, including elected  officials, administrative staff, coaches and players. You must have substantial experience in both the marketing and fitness industries, be self-motivated and fully qualified.

Send your résumé and the names of three referees to
The Club House, Smith Road, Jonesville.

Job advertisement

RECEPTIONIST/ADMINISTRATIVE OFFICER
JONESVILLE SPORTING CLUB

Reporting directly to the Club Executive Officer and President, this important position provides secretarial and administrative support to all levels of the club, while also being the ‘face’ of the organisation. 

In this comprehensive role you will be responsible for:
• answering and distributing all incoming calls
• meeting and greeting clients at the club office
• handling stationery and ordering supplies
• data entry
• accepting and receiving stock deliveries
• preparing files, letters, memoranda and reports
• driving to collect mail, and office supplies
• other administrative tasks, as directed.

This job will suit an energetic person with some work experience and a flexible outlook. You must be prepared to undertake a Working with Children and Police File Check.

Send your résumé and the names of three referees to The Club House, Smith Road, Jonesville.

Job advertisement

DIETITIAN REQUIRED
JONESVILLE SPORTING CLUB

The Jonesville Sporting Club requires an experienced dietitian to work with coaches and players.

This service provides initial consultation, dietary assessments, education, planning and review for clients. You will be required to meet personal needs, tailor individual and group eating plans, manage the catering staff at the club and work with school groups as instructed.

Discretion and the ability to empathise are highly desirable.
You must be prepared to undertake a Working with Children and Police File Check.

Send your résumé and the names of three referees to The Club House, Smith Road, Jonesville.

Pro Forma 3 - Profiles

Job applicants

Bernie
Bernie has been involved in sport all her life. At school she excelled in all physical activities, particularly tennis, soccer and swimming. She qualified for the Olympics at the age of 17, but a sports injury put an end to her championship career.

She has only recently graduated from studying marketing at university, and is keen to work with a sporting club.

Scott

Since becoming paralysed in a car accident, Scott has learnt a lot about himself and others.

He has a reputation for fairness, and for treating all of his players with respect and kindness. He has had to combat people’s prejudices about his disability but has handled
this with quiet dignity.

Elise

Since completing her degree, Elise has spent the past three years as second-in-command of marketing at the rival club.

She is regarded as being highly efficient and hard-working, but has a tendency to be abrupt and can sometimes ruffle feathers.

Her marketing knowledge is first rate and she has many contacts she can call on.

 

Shelby

Shelby has never coached a senior team, but as a junior coach she has worked hard to broaden her skills.

Her players regard her as a role model who always puts their interests first, and works hard to get the best out of them.

Shelby has adopted many new practices and is passionate about the game. She worries, however, that she may not be ready to take the next step.

Pepe

Pepe is a fun-loving and well-liked man, who is known for his practical jokes. People in his workplace often enjoy his humour, although this gets him into trouble at times, as
he often distracts others from their work.

While some of Pepe’s marketing ideas have been great successes, others have been complete failures.

Gavin

Gavin has more than 30 years experience as a coach, both here and overseas.

Gavin is reluctant to try new ideas, however, and sometimes offends the support coaches and players who bring new ideas to him.

His knowledge of the sport is very highly regarded.

Sue

Sue has forged a reputation as an enthusiastic and conscientious worker over the two years that she has worked interstate for a well-known sports club.

She is a very good communicator and treats others with respect. Her previous work has been with community groups. She has, however, limited experience in marketing.

 

Carrie

Carrie has a very good knowledge of the game and is a good communicator. She treats everyone in the organisation respectfully.

She is willing to listen to others, but sometimes finds it difficult to make a clear decision.

This can be frustrating for the people who work with her.

 

Robert

Robert has an impressive premiership record as a coach.

He has an excellent knowledge of the game, and fans love him. Players, however, are often put off by his aggressive manner.

He also has a reputation for having favourites on his team.

Mike

Mike has worked for a number of sporting organisations over the years and has gained much experience.

He lacks confidence with his ideas at times, however, and finds it difficult to inspire others. He is an excellent listener, a good team player and is very good at ensuring
that marketing jobs get done.

Libby

Libby has worked as a dietitian in hospitals and private clinics. She has worked with a variety of people and had her work published in journals.

Libby has an interest in sport but has never worked with elite athletes.

Nick

A fitness fanatic, Nick loves everything to do with sport. His energy is boundless and he enjoys working with athletes.

He is self taught when it comes to nutrition but his ideas about food and diet are often at odds with accepted scientific and medical practice.

Carl

Carl is widely regarded as a leading expert in dietetics. Much of his reputation is built on his many years of work in research overseas.

He knows little about working in a sports organisation or with elite athletes.

Meg

After many years of study, Meg is ready to start her career as a dietitian. She has up-to-date knowledge, but is not sure if she is ready for such a high-profile job.

Meg’s knowledge is excellent but her nervousness often means that she is quite shy when talking to large groups of people.

Kate

Kate has worked with athletes in sporting clubs for the past three years. Although she is quite experienced, she is often very short-tempered with her clients.

She is looking for a new  opportunity and believes that she
has the right personality for this job.

Sam

Sam is friendly to everyone he meets. He has a cheerful personality and a pleasant speaking voice.

He has reasonable computer skills but does not cope well with having to do many activities at once.

Nhi

Nhi is conscientious and hard-working. She can achieve a
lot in a very short time.

She has excellent computer skills and has a very good memory. She can, however, sometimes be abrupt and rude when she is busy.

Steph

Fresh out of school, Steph is keen and enthusiastic. She is willing to learn and is very adaptable.

She has moderate skills and is always cheery and bright. She has never worked full-time, nor does she know a great deal about sport.

Paddy

Paddy loves his sport and wants to be involved in the new club. He is willing to go the extra mile.

He has had many different types of jobs over the years and picked up a good range of skills. His computer skills, however, are lacking. 

Larissa

Larissa is keen to re-enter the workforce after taking some time off to travel overseas, where she ended up working as a travel guide.

She has recently upgraded her computer skills but has only a limited knowledge of sport.

 

Pro Forma 4 - Leadership attributes

The leadership qualities listed below have been identified as those that the club considers to be most important. As you read and assess the job applicant profiles (Pro Forma 3), place a tick in the box if the candidate's profile indicates that they may display this quality. The final results should help you in making your assessment of who should be given each job.

Leadership Quality
Bernie
Elise
Pepe
Mike
Sue
Robert
Shelby
Gavin
Carrie
Scott
Libby
Nick
Carl
Meg
Kate
Sam
Nhi
Steph
Paddy
Larissa
Respect for
themselves and
others




















Honesty and
trustworthiness




















Leading by example




















Taking responsibility




















Being enthusiastic




















Involving others



















Working well with
others




















Being good
communicators




















 

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