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Get help to find what you need

Club Matters offers support and guidance to clubs in a wide range of topics.

To help find what you need, select the option below which best describes your current situation.

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Get started

If your club is new or in the process of being set-up, we recommend exploring our Start a Club section.

This section is split into the following topics:

  • Things to think about before starting your club
  • The rules and structure your new club will adopt
  • The facilities and funding you will need in place
  • Raising awareness of your club
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For further information on the support available across Club Matters, visit our Get Started with Club Matters section.

Keep it up

If your club wants to maintain what it has, or check you’re doing the best you can, we recommend exploring our main topic areas in more detail.

Sign-up to workshops which cover key topic areas such as business planning, marketing, club structures, finances and tax.

Register for free for full access to our resources

Click on these boxes to access toolkits, online modules and interactive content. Have a look around to see which areas your club could benefit from.

For further information on the support available across Club Matters, visit our Get Started with Club Matters section.

Get back on track

My club is struggling on one or more areas and is looking for specific guidance.

We need help growing or maintaining our membership levels We need to manage our finances better We are looking for guidance on applying for funding We need more volunteers to help run our club We are unsure what good governance really means or how we can improve We don’t know if our club’s legal structure is right for us We need support with our facilities or lack of facilities We want to better understand our members and what they want from the club

Top Tips

1. Think about the best way to market your club to reach potential new members

2. Make sure your club is welcoming and inclusive to appeal to new members

3. Make your club experience extraordinary, so that your current members want to stay

Links

Check out the following pages for specific guidance:

Marketing Inclusivity Members and Participants

Top Tips

1. Get into a routine of checking your club’s financial position and keeping records

2. Plan for the future and develop a budget, to help you keep costs on track

3. Get your income from a variety of sources, to stay sustainable

Links

Check out the following pages for specific guidance:

Managing Money Budgeting Generating Income

Top Tips

1. Create a clear club development plan to show funders that you have realistic goals

2. Research the best funding for your club

3. Don’t forget the other ways to raise funds for your club, including fundraising, forming partnerships and gaining sponsorship

Links

Check out the following pages for specific guidance:

Club Development Plan Funding Guidance Generating Income

Top Tips

1. Look beyond your current volunteer base - don’t just rely on those who already have a link to the club

2. Convey the wider benefits of volunteering, such as improving a CV or boosting self-confidence

3. Improve the experience of your current volunteers to reduce the risk of them leaving

Links

Check out the following pages for specific guidance:

Finding Volunteers Developing Volunteers Keeping Volunteers

Top Tips

1. Governance is all about having the right people, policies, procedures and structure in place at your club

2. Protect your club’s reputation by creating, communicating and following a robust set of policies

3. Have an effective committee with clear roles and responsibilities, skills and experiences

Links

Check out the following pages for specific guidance:

Governance Policies and Procedures Effective Committees

Top Tips

1. Explore all the options available and consider seeking legal advice

2. Incorporating your club creates a separate legal entity and protects your committee and members from entering into contracts in their own name

3. Adopting charitable status or becoming a Community Amateur Sports Club (CASC) can provide benefits such as tax relief for your club

Links

Check out the following pages for specific guidance:

Club structures Incorporated Charitable Status CASC

Top Tips

1. Carry out risk assessments for the facilities you use

2. Hiring or leasing facilities is often the simplest solution if you only need to access them for a few hours each week

3. If you own your facilities, make sure you are clued up on business rates and energy saving measures to keep costs down

Links

Check out the following pages for specific guidance:

Club Facilities Risk Assessment Managing Costs

Top Tips

1. The way people participate in sport is changing, you need to make sure your club is flexible and can adapt to modern lifestyles and demands

2. Seek feedback from your members

3. Every club can improve, keep trying to make your club’s experience even better by creating and following an action plan

Links

Check out the following pages for specific guidance:

Understanding Your Members Understanding Your Offer Delivering a Great Experience Being Consistently Brilliant

Raise the bar

If your club is keen to develop and you want to improve your current offer, we recommend using our Club Improvement Tool.

The tool prompts you to think about how your club is performing now and where you would like it to be in the future. Based on your responses, the tool directs you to specific resources to help you reach your goals.

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For further information on the support available across Club Matters, visit our Get Started with Club Matters section.

Clubmark

Clubmark is Sport England’s universally acknowledged, cross-sport accreditation scheme.

If your club wants to achieve Clubmark accreditation or you want to find out more, we recommend exploring our Clubmark section.

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For further information on the support available across Club Matters, visit our Get Started with Club Matters section.

Developing Volunteers

Negotiation

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Good negotiation skills are essential in helping your club to run smoothly.

Negotiation can be awkward to begin with and it is sometimes easier to agree with the first offer you receive. This can lead to someone with the loudest voice getting their own way which might not be in the best interests of members.

If you need to improve your negotiation skills download the negotiation guide and have a think about the questions below:

Why and when might you negotiate?

There will be many opportunities to use negotiation skills at your club including:

  • To ensure the best possible deal for the club and its members
  • To delegate tasks to others and spreading the workload
  • Saying no to unreasonable requests

What makes a good negotiator?

People who are good at negotiating come in all shapes and sizes. There is no one size fits all. The principles of negotiation remain the same, however:

  • Be open with others
  • Be willing to be flexible
  • Look for an agreement where everyone is happy
  • Use reason and logic
  • Keep calm and stay positive
  • Ensure you have a good understanding of the subject matter
  • Know what you want and what you would be prepared to accept
  • Listen, try to understand, then be prepared to reach an agreement

How to prepare for negotiation

You should spend as much time as you think appropriate to plan, running through various scenarios. It can be very useful to think through the whole negotiation process before you start. Make sure you:

  • Know what you want. This may sound like common sense but many people enter negotiation half-heartedly. Make sure you know what you goals are from the negotiation.
  • Know your priorities. Distinguish between your needs, wants and likes.
  • Know your starting point and bottom line. Decide where you will start regardless of the starting point of the other person. And agree on where you will walk away.
  • Develop your strategy. What are you prepared to trade and think about what the other person may be willing to give up. Think about the person you are negotiating with; what are their beliefs, values, personality and preferences? Assess their likely approach.

Good preparation will give you the best chance to get the outcome you want.

What to do in the meeting

When you are in a negotiation it is important to:

  • Keep a cool head so you can think clearly
  • Explain your point of view clearly and calmly
  • Listen and make sure you understand the other party's point of view
  • Smile and keep it friendly

At the meeting you will need to:

  • Take time to understand each other’s views
  • Explore different options
  • Reach an agreement where possible or walk away if not
  • Agree the details or next steps

Download the negotiation guide to walk you through each of these steps.


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