Friday, November 21, 2008

Advise Me!

Miss 15 is a swim coach. She is not the head coach, she is just a coach, she is also a swimmer, meaning when she is done coaching she goes straight to swim with her group.

Here is where I'm having some "issues" that I'm hoping someone can give me a little perspective on:

Every day I take Miss 15 to the pool about 3:10. She is always the first coach there so she sets up both pools, meaning she puts out 4 lane ropes minimum in each pool, she puts up two sets of backstroke flags across each pool including moving the very heavy poles (8 total) to their spots and then stretching flags. As other coaches arrive some of them help, but generally Miss 15 has at least half the work done, if not all of it. The Assistant Head Coach, Sally, never arrives in time to help set up. I know this, because she is at the same place I am at that time, picking up her kids from school and bringing them to the pool. She walks out at the last minute just in time to start coaching her group. Meanwhile the pool is set up, and Miss 15 and the other young coaches have been in charge of all the early arrivals of swimmers and watching them, keeping them safe, helping put on caps and goggles etc.

In spite of all the work Miss 15 does before hand, Sally always has some smart mouthed remark at the end of Miss 15's coaching duties. Yesterday she complained, loudly, about Miss 15 releasing her students too early from practice. (She did not, another coach has previously told her her group should be done at that time. However, it was not the head coach) In fact, Sally made Miss 15's swimmers stay with her group for the extra 15 minutes until she thought practice should be done. Miss 15 went and swam with her group. Sally then made it a point to complain LOUDLY as Miss 15 was swimming that Miss 15 hadn't taken down the lane ropes she had used, even though Sally's group was still in the water and using them. So Miss 15 hopped out of her swim time, and went and took down lane ropes.

Here is my dilemma. Do I interfere? Do I talk to Sally, or the head coach and find out exactly what they want from Miss 15 and her group. Or do I keep my mouth shut and let what happens to Miss 15 and her job just happen and let her deal with it on her own. The head coach has never said anything to Miss 15. But, Sally, already has issues with Miss 15 in other areas of life, in general, she just doesn't like her. Sally and I don't necessarily get along all that well, in case you hadn't guessed. I feel like Miss 15 gets bad mouthed by Sally at every opportunity in spite of all the hard work she does. Sally also has been known to interfere with Miss 15's coaching when what she really should be doing is coaching her own group. I won't start with Sally's aversion to Miss 10 and her irresponsibility in that area. I'll save that for another post.

What's the consensus?


Nathan Alan Johnson said...

As a new parent, I’m curious to see how you handle the situation.

My first instinct is to interfere and talk to the head coach about Sally’s behavior and gain perspective before pushing the issue. Regardless of your relationship with Sally, something needs to be said. Based upon your posting, is sounds like Sally is a loud mouth that thinks making waves (no pun intended) is the only way to get something done. Acting like an 8th grader when you’re not an 8th grader isn’t the best lesson to teach young influential minds. Acting like an adult and being professional at your job is however.

If you’re life is anything like mine, asking a question when trying to make a statement always seems to motivate someone better than telling them they’re wrong. Here’s an example, “Hey Coach! Does Sally have a problem with Miss 15? It’s just that she sure expects more out of her than she does of herself. Is there something I should be speaking to my daughter about?” Based-upon the response of the head coach, my conversation with my daughter would be the: ‘grin and bear it’ or ‘I think coach will be talking to Sally.’

So, like I said before, I’m curious to see how you’ll handle this situation. The above is my version of how I’d handle it in the perfect world in my head.

Oh, and yes I do read your blog.

Ronica said...

Me, too. What he said.

That being said, I think I'd go to the head head, and explain things as they are. Let them know you have a problem with Sally anyway, and you know that might color things, and you don't want to set a bad example for your daughter by getting all up in her business, but you feel like something isn't right. Let them know what you see, but don't let 15 know and don't let Sally know. Ask them to monitor the situation. You don't want to mess things up if they aren't really happening that way, but you also don't want 15 to get screwed. Very understandable. A good, responsible head head will take the reigns from there.

You are a good mom. Yes, you are passionate. So are all us Bgirls. How could we not be with Grandma as our Grandma? But sometimes it's best to be manipulative... especially when you're hoping for peace. Good luck and breathe easy, MamaBear. Your heart is in the right place, even if she gets your dander up.

Lo said...

I'd talk to Miss 15 first and get her take on the situation. Tell her your concerns and that you'd like to talk to the head coach about it, but don't want to interfere if she doesn't want you to. If she wants your help, you'll know by the look on her face even if she doesn't want to admit it. If she doesn't want you to speak on her behalf then help her branstorm ways to remedy the situation since letting someone treat her this way is not an option.

Let her know if things get worse or if she changes her mind and wants you to talk to the head coach, all she has to do is ask.

I'm not a mom, but this is how I try to handle situations with my staff - all of whom are at least 10 years younger than me and tease me about my "Mama Bear" instincts.