The Scottish Football Association

Leader Tools

Club leader with team


The roadmap to success


Leading a football club, you have the power and responsibility to impact on youth. Creating a positive, character-building youth football environment may be the most important thing you ever do, because it can provide thousands of children with life lessons in teamwork, commitment, persistence, empathy, and leadership. This will develop a lifelong love of football in your club and they will stay involved as players, coaches and parents in later life who carry forward the legacy they gain from your leadership to influence the next generation.

Use the tools below to make it so.


Tool 1. Developing a Mission Statement

Clubs and organisations often forget about their vision & goals and get caught up in the day to day running of the club. A mission statement can be a powerful way to inspire and promote your club ethos and allow all club members (parents, players, coaches, officials, administrators) to know what the club is aiming to achieve and what is expected in terms of behaviour.


A mission statement will;

- Help leaders communicate to all the clubs members what the  core values of the Club are.

- Guides and influences behavioural expectations for players,  parents, officials, coaches and administrators.

- Help clubs deal with diffcult, ambiguous situations. When a  problem comes up and the appropriate action isn't clear,  returning to the mission statement should provide guidance for  how to act.

- Provide a way of beginning conversations about the values of  the club. Conversations are an important way that people assess  and modify their values and behaviour, so stimulating  conversations about Positive Coaching among parents, coaches,  players, spectators and offcials is a good thing


An effective mission statement should

- Create a positive sense of purpose & vision for the future

State goals and values, clearly and concisely and relevant to all  members

- Inspire all members and put key values into action on a weekly  basis


Get a small working group or the club committee and have a session to discuss what your vision is as a club, how you will achieve this vision and what values are most important to the club.

Once discussed and agreed, write a draft mission statement and field-test it with coaches, parents, volunteers and Players.


If your club has a Mission Statement, review it to see if it reflects what your club aspires to be. For example, if it's important to you that young people have fun playing in your club, then that should be in the mission statement. Review your mission statement and use the other tools on how to best act on what you are striving to achieve as a club.


Tool 2 – Develop a Culture Shaping Team

1. Appoint a PCS club leader who will have the responsibility to champion the culture within your club. The PCS club leader will be represented on the club committee and will have an item on every committee meeting. The PCS club leader will spread the word about Positive Coaching to parents, players, coaches and volunteer members of the club. The PCS club leader will promote the mission and values of club and make sure the club is doing what it says it is doing. See PCS Club Leader role description in the leader resources section


2. Appoint match day touchline champions who will help with touchline management by giving gentle or, when necessary, more assertive reminders to honour our game! The ideal champions have strong, yet friendly people skills. Club leaders, coaches, parents and even players can be touchline champions. A club can identify champions at each age group to make sure the same messages are going to all members in club. See Match-day Touchline Champion role description in leader resources section.


3. PCS Workshop programme – Plan for the club to attend our PCS workshops. We deliver workshops to club Leaders, coaches, parents and players. If you are a Scottish FA Quality Mark club you will be offered workshops as part of your accreditation. Alternatively there are open workshops taking place nationally through the six Scottish FA regions as well as workshop delivery through the SYFA & SWF leagues and associations.


Tool 3. Develop a Communication plan

Once you have a mission the next step is to ensure that the mission is communicated effectively to all the members in the club and the wider community. Follow the steps and use the communication plan template in the leader resources section.


1. Identify who you want to communicate with?

- Club members and volunteers

- Members of other clubs or teams

- Parents and carers

- Officials/ Referees       

- Representatives from Scottish FA or Affiliated Association

- Local schools and other community organisations or partners

- Potential new members

- The media and sponsors


2. Identify methods of communication?

- Telephone

- Email

- Informal/formal meetings

- Text

- Website

- Social Media

- Newsletters

- E-Newsletters

- Leaflets

- Signage/Branding


3. Develop a plan using the template in the leader resources section. Identify what method of communication you will use with each of the group of people you want to communicate with. At the heart of the communication should be the mission, values and ethos of the club. This will keep consistent messages going to all members internally and also promote the club positively to the community. At PCS we believe in message bombardment so the message is heard many times to promote a common language and shape the culture within the club.

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