You can’t connect the dots looking forward; you can only connect them looking backwards. So you have to trust that the dots will somehow connect in your future. You have to trust in something – your gut, destiny, life, karma, whatever. This approach has never let me down, and it has made all the difference in my life. ~ Steve Jobs
Where are we, and how did we get here? We are at a pivotal time, and full of tremendous opportunity. We are glad to have your attention. This message is going to be short and sweet for a few different reasons. The best reason is that we want to maximize the impact by presenting in fewer words. The second one is that we are getting very busy, and it will be time to get on with a few more things. You should expect this blog to become a bit shorter moving forward.
We have certified our first ever coach, Jon Betts of Illinois. Jon has done a great job of helping us also to refine our test. Very soon, we will have our second certified member as soon as we score the test and give the interview. We interview test takers on the questions they missed, first to check to see if they understand better in the context of a conversation, or understand the question better after they are told the answer. Testing can be a much more educational experience, than simply taking in a score. We make that a bit of a teaching moment to help fill in some understanding of, what was intended in the book. Finally, the feedback generated from our new friend, partner and client is what will drive growth moving forward. We look forward to you also joining in our process. We are dots, just like you are a dot we would like to connect.
No, our growth is not targeted at gaining 10,000 members. It’s targeted at becoming better, creating more connections, and growing one relationship at a time. So, now we have a level of trust with members we certify, as a personal relationship has begun. We trust anyone who take the time to study and understand, we may have a greater level of trust in someone who seeks to help us become better. Is that you?
The Dots are Beginning to Connect
Styrling and I did not start this alone. As you may be aware, the roots of USATennisCoach were planted at backyard BBQ in Fremont, CA about 30 minutes from where I live. Styrling and I met, after he had spent some time gaining valuable mentoring with Ken DeHart, well noted USPTA and PTR Master Professional. The dots almost didn’t connect at all, but that’s another story.
We are all on a team, to help other coaches join the team, to help our team of 99% of the coaches, who coach 99% of the players, to create a groundswell of growth in the high school game. In time, and as a by-product, we can boost the fringe of highly competitive players, late bloomers and the overlooked, creating opportunities for those who will have great stories of becoming a serious player at 14, ascending all they way to being a professional player at 24. That’s 10 years. However, about one hundred times more important to this organization, than developing those rare individuals, is providing a pathway to players to become the 4.5 and 5.0 players of the future, the ones that become the backbones of great club play, saving the clubs, saving the facilities.
Come Together for One Goal
We all know those people who run down high school tennis, and in the short run we are not going to convince them to change their minds. Although it can be a good idea to bring a ray of sunshine out, when someone is creating a dark cloud. Instead, we begin to connect more dots, bring more coaches into the growth model, and those doubters and haters will soon perish from our view. Some may actually stop and say, “I’m changing my mind, high school tennis has grown to be something much better.” We won’t win them by fighting them, but we can point out that we don’t need their negativity. We also won’t win them by complaining, but we can influence a generation of tennis players by connecting one more dot today, another next week, and start to connect more dots every week. Let’s use the teamwork among mankind, men and women coaches, to achieve the one goal, to make your team, your league, your district, state, and the USA better for high school tennis. This new generation of tennis players will be the ones who transform the high school tennis, the practice court, how we learn, and the sport of tennis.
Bill Patton is a 29 year veteran of the Tennis Industry. He is a Mentor Coach and Founding Member of USATennisCoach, LLC. Bill is also USPTA Elite, PTR and MTM certified. He is the author of 11 books on tennis, most notably The Art of Coaching High School Tennis which has been as high as #3 on the Amazon list for Tennis Coaching Books. Consider joining USATennisCoach for only $20 annually +$37 for the certification as a one time fee. Contact Bill today (510) 909-3662 or USATennisCoach@gmail.com