eing welcoming by ‘doing a Svend’
In 2008 Sports Marketing Network ran a workshop for the ASA North East region on a How to be a Welcoming Club. One of the clubs attending was Bingley Swimming Club. At this workshop Svend Elkjaer ran a very simple exercise on simply saying ‘hello’ and ‘welcome’ to every new person, young or old, who came to the club.
In September 2011, as part of my preparation for delivering workshops at the ASA’s National Conference, I visited Bingley Swimming Club in Bradford to get a better insight into the challenges and opportunities of running a swimming club in 2011. At the end of my visit, Di Whitaker, the Head Coach, then told me that they did indeed attend the workshop I had run three years earlier. Since then the Chair of the Club has made a point of shaking hands with every newcomer to the Club. “Three years later, we still call it ‘doing a Svend’,” Di then added.
If we could get all our community sports clubs to become that bit more welcoming by using such simple tools, we would see them flourish…
Help people to try out new activities without having to commit themselves. SMN call it
Dip a TOE = Trial, Observe, Experience
encouraging activity providers to give potential members the opportunity to test their experiences.