Team Registration 101
So you’re thinking about team registration in the CRHL. Maybe you’ve put together a team before and you’re a seasoned veteran at running a team. But if you’re new to this whole thing, it can be a pretty daunting task. It’s a lot more complicated then playing hockey with a few buddies. In fact, if you are all friends, it can make things even more troublesome. Here are some tips from fellow team reps and the Convenor that can help you navigate the tricky waters of hockey team registration.
Get the Money Up Front
Between team reps and league staff, this is a pretty unanimous point. The way men’s leagues work is that one person – YOU- has to pay for the whole team. This comes goes on your credit card or out of your bank account and you are liable for paying the correct amount to the league. If guys don’t pay you before the first game, they don’t play. I’ve seen way too many team reps get burned by teammates playing a few games and then taking off when it is time to pay. Set a date you need the money by, and stick to it.
Dealing with money can also make it harder to run a team when you’re all friends. It’s awkward to ask a friend for money, but when your ass is on the line for the team fees, you have to do it. And sometimes you have to be a jerk and boot a friend who is unable to pay. A true friend will chip in for his portion of the team fees, and will also understand that if he can’t pay, he shouldn’t play.
The CRHL tries to make this easier on team reps by offering payment plans and also providing different avenues to pay, either pay credit card, cash, or e-transfer. As long as you get in the required amount by the due date, you’re good. You can chip away at it however you want, everything is tracked with accounting software and you get a receipt and an account update after every transaction.
Factor Gear Into the Cost – Spares Too!
Essentially every men’s league in the city requires you to get your own matching jerseys. When pricing those out be sure to transfer the cost to your teammates as well and factor it in to their per-season fees. When the season is over, they can return them and get their jersey money back, or keep them.
When ordering jerseys, be sure to get a few extras for spares. When spares play, issue them a jersey before the game and take it back directly after the game. Spare jerseys can be without a logo on the front (save on costs), so long as they are a matching colour.
The CRHL recognizes that there are a ton of costs, jerseys being just another cost on top of team fees, pucks & water bottles. Contact the league to get 50% off jersey & socks packages with Pro Hockey Life. It takes a while to actually get the jerseys so order early!
It is paramount to be organized as a team rep, especially in regards to team fees and game attendance. You should have collected all your team members’ emails and phone numbers including your spares before team registration. Typically, across all platforms, you should require a response if a player IS ATTENDING. If you require a response if a player is not attending, there is a lot of uncertainty come game time. However, if you have an understanding with your teammates and they actually let you know when they’re not coming, then either works.
There are variety of ways to keep teams organized and I will outline a few that I have come across.
Facebook – a simple Facebook group with your team members allows you to communicate with all your team members very easily. You can add your games as events and message each other on the wall. Posts on the wall will also be pushed to mobile devices, so players are all in the know.
Email Blast/Mailchimp – an easy method is to just send out a quick email to remind players of a game. It is best done the night before and/or the day of so it is fresh in everyone’s minds. Mailchimp is a useful utility for sending out email blasts. It is available for free, and it allows you to track who has opened the email and what links are being clicked on.
Google – you can add all your games to a Google Calendar, link it to your email blasts, and invite your players via email. It will help you track who is showing up based on accepted invites.
RosterBot – RosterBot is a really useful, free app for mobile devices. You can add all your teammates and use group chat, upload game times, track fees, and assign positions. It can be used on mobile devices or desktop. Click here to check it out.
Last but certainly not least, do not hesitate to be proactive with the league office. I typically answer emails within the day, and I am available by phone or email to answer any questions regarding team registration or league matters. In addition, pay attention to league emails and your team’s schedule. Stay subscribed to the CRHL email list so you can stay in the know regarding next season’s team registration, schedule uploads, and promos including Gear Up Day at Pro Hockey Life.
Feel free to be proactive with league scheduling. Very often during the summer season, there are other team sports that happen weekly during a weeknight. If every Tuesday is bad for you and your team because you and a few of your teammates also play softball, let me know and you can expect most Tuesdays to be CRHL-game free. I understand that hockey is not your life, many of you have families, jobs, and vacations to attend to. I wish to be as helpful as possible accommodating all these different commitments so you can enjoy the game of hockey without giving up other important commitments. The schedule comes out in advance, so you have time to plan your life and make arrangements if necessary.
The CRHL does it’s best to help you understand what you’re getting into and help alleviate some of the stress of the additional hidden expenses and responsibilities you may not know about about team registration. There’s a lot to account for, but I’m here to help! This summer season is shaping up to be our best yet, don’t miss out!
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