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i’ve realised over the years that a lot of organisations and sporting teams care more about the role you fill than they do about your development. lip service is easy - people are becoming very good at telling you exactly what you want to hear, so how can you discern what’s real and what’s bullshit?

notice their sales pitch. are they talking about how well you’ll fit in with the team? how much you can help develop the organisation? what YOU can do for THEM? or are they focusing on your development and how THEY can help YOU? because if the latter doesn’t exist, they’re not interested in you as a person, only the role you can fill.

not only have i been overlooked for my playing abilities over the years, but i’ve felt i’ve been overlooked for my leadership abilities, too. salisbury inter, and specifically the head coach there, targeted me in 2018 with the specific intentions of a mutually beneficial relationship. she spoke about the culture and professionalism i could bring to the club, but more importantly, she spoke about how she could develop me as a player and as a person.

the first thing this coach gave me was not a starting position, it was trust. and along with the trust, she gave me opportunities. she gave me a platform in which i could lead without question. she wholeheartedly valued me as a leader first, player second. and for the first time in as long as i can remember, i felt seen and valued as more than just a player. i felt seen and valued as a human.

not every coach, nor every boss, is going to be the one for you. the old mantra of “sticking it out” isn’t constructive. if you’re not valued, and you’ll know when you’re not, find someone, find somewhere who knows your worth. because when you do, you’ll never question your value again.

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