In this blog post you’ll find 10 ways to be a better referee mentor. Because I like them so much, I asked AYSO to use their list on my blog. When mentoring new referees, keep this in mind.
- Be sure to get the person’s approval to be mentored. Nobody likes unsolicited advice!
- Help the person understand and feel that you’re there to support him or her.
- Honor confidentiality – everything the person tells you stays with you only.
- Listen to the person’s story to show interest and understand his or her issue(s). Ask questions, let the mentee come up with his/her development points.
- Identify with the person’s concerns.
- Ask questions to help the person build awareness of good skills and areas for improvement.
- Identify and confirm performance/behavior that demonstrates good skills.
- Be compassionate when you discuss areas for improvement.
- Discuss no more than one or two areas for improvement per mentoring session.
- Provide a couple of options for correct practice for each area of improvement.
And as a bonus: Identify a mentor to mentor you.
How to make mentoring effective
Mentoring should be an ongoing process that provides a loop for self-analysis that generates awareness, commitment to change, and applying correct practice. For the process to be effective, you must provide honest feedback – what the person needs to hear and not what they would like to hear. Thank you for helping us value and mentor our volunteers.
Make a selfscan
What works for me is making an analysis of my own performances and score it. Because of this selfscan for referees, I can tell my mentor or coach where my improvement area lies. He or she can then focus on my development points, which helps me most. In the end that gives me a better chance to reach my goals for this season and the long-term as well.
4 types of mentors every ref needs
And a tip from Jan, the author of this blog. Maybe you need more than one mentor. Sometimes you need a person who knows you personally, sometimes you need a fresh look at your performance. Because your needs differ, you need different types of methos. Check out the blog about 4 types of mentors you need as referee.
Thanks AYSO for the tips. If in the US, consider becoming a volunteer referee at AYSO.
How many mentors do you have? What is important for you when having contact with your mentor? Comment below.