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ETTA Future of Regional Coaching

Discussion in 'Governing bodies' started by Graham Frankel, Jul 25, 2013.

  1. Following the shock resignation of Stephen Gertsen the Eastern Region will be waiting anxiously for news of the ETTA's organisational review, and in particular to get continuity of the great work that Stephen did. The huge area means that the job is really impossible but Stephen managed to engender a strong community of coaches. In terms of organisation my personal observation is that the position known as "Development Manager" should report in to the Regional Coach. What do people in other regions think?
  2. Belisar

    Belisar Contributor

    Gertsen ended up going off to Greenhouse then?

    I would amalgamate coach and development officer into one role but make the areas they cover smaller so you have the same numbers overall. Having said that I am not sure if the roles of development or coaching at a regional level going to continue long term anyway?
  3. Yes John he's going to Greenhouse. The surprise for me was that it seemed obvious he would progress into a more senior role with the ETTA (and I guess still could) but the change of administration and the consultants' review will inevitably result in a lot of uncertainty for a while and you can't blame him for taking a good offer. I agree with you that the coaching and development jobs could be merged but the people in those jobs need reliable (paid?) support to function effectively. And I still think the major clubs should have a full time paid coach.
  4. Belisar

    Belisar Contributor

    Greenhouse job is probably better paid, is not a term based contract (ETTA have to set contract terms in line with spending reviews) and as I think he is being asked to set up and run a large club in west London I suspect it has a personal challenge and thus some appeal. I heard Aad was also being interviewed by Greenhouse?

    I thought the consultants reviews of the ETTA were interesting, contained lots of words although were a little short on real practical detail. Also be interesting to see how and if some of the thoughts are adopted. For example changing the power base from the national council to the chairman makes some sense but I am not quite sure where the safety net is and does the national council have to vote through a reduction in its own power?

    Paid coaches in major clubs would be nice but apart from the funding the accessibility is also a bit of an issue. I have been working with Stuart Gibbs and a few others running some county training at Batts and some of the parents (for example those who live in Southend) would like a session closer to their own home. Other than Batts I am not sure there is a major club in Essex (and by that I mean large number of tables, good conditions, good support network and open potentially 7 days a week).
  5. Wow I didn't realise you were in the Stuart Gibbs set up - I should see you then before too long. I wasn't able to go to the last one but should be there on 1st Sept (I can only do the morning that day).
  6. Belisar

    Belisar Contributor

    Been running some county based training for some time in Upminster and been to both of Stuart's Batts sessions so far.

    August is a mad month for me, from 1st to 11th I am working at Canary Wharf on their "Ping" project. On the 12th I go off for 2 weeks jury service and assuming I do not get a long case on the 26th I am due to take part in the Joola training camp for 5 days. Come the 1st Sept I could well be on my knees. Also hoping I have a car by then. Took me 2 hours to get to Batts by train for the last one :eek:

    I think what Stuart is trying to do is a good idea but he needs support and the players need time. I read with envy what JKC's son Fred gets in terms of regional support (although I wonder if that is going to continue).
  7. Good luck with all that - the Ping project is a great idea. Are you coaching at the Joola camp - where is it?
  8. Belisar

    Belisar Contributor

    Hoping to be playing for a change rather than coaching at the Joola camp (although to be honest I am more looking for coaching ideas, innovations and techniques).

    It is at Morpeth club in London. Coaches are Ali Sajgad Faisal (2 times Pakistan national champion and current German national league player) and Florian Jacobi who I think is the main man for German juniors. Rosskopf and Weixing are also involved at some point (on the Tue I believe) and are doing a demo at the club on Tue evening.
  9. dunc

    dunc Coffee Addict Founder Administrator

    Chen Weixing? Aw man I wish I could see that. Get a video, pretty please!
  10. Pleb

    Pleb Member

    Ideally there should only be up to half a dozen staff reporting to any individual.

    But there are currently ten regions. So as it already stands there are up to ten Regional Development Managers reporting into whoever in the Development Department. And there are already up to ten Regional Coaches reporting into whoever in the Coaching Department.

    And by allocating each existing one of either to a smaller area one would now raise it to twenty reporting into whoever in the Development Department and whoever in the Coaching Department or in some combined department.

    Also the current Regional Development Managers are, or were meant, not to coach, but to facilitate development, and be line managers of any ETTA staff including the Regional Coach, in their Region, and so do not necessarily have actual coaching training and experience.
  11. Pleb

    Pleb Member

    Re 2nd paragraph last sentence, one assumed that ETTA Regulation change proposals would have to be put to next ETTA AGM to be passed. But ETTA Regulation 27.11 says the National Council may delegate any of its duties and powers to the Board or any other committee. And the National Council meeting tomorrow (Saturday 27th July) is being asked to do exactly that now. As pressure on National Council to accede there may be suggestion that without this the £9M funding from Sport England covering years 2 to 4 of the 4 year plan may be doubtful. Thought myself that this was more conditional on continuing evidence of increased participation in table tennis.
  12. Belisar

    Belisar Contributor


    Not sure of the point here. Currently there are 20 people reporting into two departments. I am not asking for more people so there would still be 20 people but now reporting into a single department.

    I know what they are meant to do. I just think they would be better focussing on a smaller area rather than be forced either to spread their time massively or choose where they go to help (so some miss out completely).

    Never seen or spoken to the regional coach or development officer (and we have the current county under 13 champ at our club and we host a regular county development squad). Our club comes under one region but most of the county comes under another. Development comes from myself and another volunteering time to see local council and schools. We find our own funding (although that is becoming more of a struggle) we run a club with 3 volunteers and one paid coach. We are not big but it seems there are a few clubs like us who seem to miss out and I can only assume time/distance is a factor.

    In terms of development I have not seen or heard of any evidence that suggests specialising and covering a region works better than fulfilling a dual role. I know in Liverpool the appointed an RDO who had no TT experience but appeared to have a good CV in terms of finding funding for development. I have no idea if that provided a success, in some was it would be nice if had but I have to wonder if clubs and players would be better served by someone fulfilling both roles but covering a smaller area.
    Last edited: Jul 26, 2013
  13. Pleb

    Pleb Member

    Regional Development Managers have the wider remit of responsibilities. And they are stated to be the line managers of ETTA staff within their region even though the Regional Coaches for example also report to the ETTA Coaching Department. Regions do have Chairmen but the bulk is organised and reported on by the Regional Development Manager but the coaching specifically by the Regional Coach.
  14. Belisar

    Belisar Contributor

    It's interesting as I have not heard that 6 is the magic number in terms of managing people.

    Does Portas not make that difficult? Less departments does not necessarily mean less people on the ground it presumably means people reporting into fewer departments. Surely the idea is not to replace departments with additional layers of supervision (or is it)?
  15. Pleb

    Pleb Member

    As I said, it was an old guide limit which I remember, and at your 20, the consequence is need for an additional layer. As for Portas, as a Pleb, I am not privy to their thinking. I just happen to be cc'd today's National Council agenda, and the Portas Executive Summary which is up to begin implementation. All I know is that the Scope of the Portas Review was set by an (outgoing) ETTA Board member, although the Summary of Key Recommendations includes one that ETTA Departments, headed by the Vice-chairmen, be reduced to four. And the type of interviewees set out do not seem to have included any grass roots, i.e. the Membership.
  16. I know you are a pleb but why the anonymity?
  17. Belisar

    Belisar Contributor

    Whatever the rights and wrongs I suppose we could be in for an interesting time going forwards.

    We have a new chairman and management team with their own thoughts and ideas. We have the views and recommendations from the review and the wants or requirements of Sport England.

    In answer to the tread I have not seen or heard of anything definitive in terms of the longer term future of regional coaches. Has anyone else?
  18. Pleb

    Pleb Member

    No particular reason.
  19. Adam Curran

    Adam Curran Moderator

    Personally i think that the ETTA would struggle to combine both the Regional Development Officers and the Regional coaches to one. For starters the Regional Coaches have to travel all around the region on a daily basis to provide coaches to all of the areas in their region. And they usually work 5-6 days a week. The Regional Development Officer job is a job that is more office based and does not require a lot of traveling. Therefore how would a regional coach manage to fit it all in? For example they have to travel from Middlesborough to Newcastle for a coaching session that starts at 6, they would have to leave at around 5 so unless they wanted to work as a regional development officer before they are coaching aswell i can see it happening? What i would like to know is if this did happen would the regional coaches be doing less coaching sessions as they would have to balance two jobs? Which ultimately would decrease the standard of English Table Tennis???
  20. Belisar

    Belisar Contributor

    Travel is one of the reasons I wonder if a dual role but with a smaller region would work. As I understand it travel time is included in the working hours (is that right?).

    If so, you could spend a lot of time on the road rather than actually doing the job. For example the last county session I attended took me 2 hours of travel to get there. The session was 5 hours then of course I have the return trip. If I was the regional coach that would be 9 hours gone and just over half of it was actual coaching. A regional coach cannot live close to every club he/she visits (unless they are only visiting a few select clubs)

    That is why I wonder if a smaller sized area would generate more time or at least mean less of it on the road.

    Got to be honest, I really have little or no idea what the Development Officers actually do on a daily basis, so I am diving in and guessing - anyone got any form of job description or knowledge of the daily/weekly kind of activities?

    But I wonder of familiarity of a smaller area, of the key people, the clubs and what makes them click would work. Got to be hard to be in either of the regional roles and give everyone within it a fair share of time. Elsewhere I have seen a lot of moans about regional coaches (Gertsen is one of the exceptions) and I just wonder why that is and what could be done differently.

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