A little trip to Leamington today, just happened to walk past the greens, well ‘C’ and ‘D’ green has had the top taken off and looks like levelling in progress, something being done on ‘A’ green too but only on the edge. ...
Worcestershire have proposed Anna for this role there are 5 candidatesBOWLERS: WHY I'M STANDING FOR CHAIR - From the conversations I have had, I believe my vision for the future direction and shape of Bowls England matches that of many bowlers. So, let me share it with you.
The focus of any organisation must be adding value to the people it serves. For Bowls England that’s our County Associations, clubs and bowlers. Fundamentally, our clubs need bowlers to play, a committee to run the club and a decent green to bowl on. Our Counties need clubs and people to run the County Association, and our bowlers need matches and competitions to play in. I believe that Bowls England’s role is to provide the support, guidance and services that you need to do these things easily and effectively.
We’re great at some of it and we need to improve in other areas, and to do that I believe we need to start looking outwards. To tell the rest of the country how great bowls is and why they should come and play it. To learn best practice from other bowling nations and other sports; on marketing, development, coaching and how to squeeze every last ounce of profile raising out of hosting the Commonwealth Games. And to bring more money into our sport, so we can do even more for our clubs, Counties and bowlers.
On the subject of money, I believe we need to make better use of our assets. We have built up a large sum of money in reserves; more than we realistically need. That’s your money and we need to use it for your benefit. We’ve made a start, using some of it to fund the new web site, competitions portal and membership register, which will make it easier for you to access and manage information, and make the Bowls England office more efficient. But there’s more I think we need to do. Particularly on promoting and marketing our sport, and helping you to promote and market your clubs, so we can halt (and try to reverse) the decline in membership.
So, who will those new members be? I believe we should be targeting people in their 30s to 50s who are looking to move on from their first sport (or want to return to sport) and are looking for something that is still competitive and skilful, but not quite so physical. To attract these people I believe we need to look and behave more like other sports – things like what we wear and when (and for how long) we play may seem like superficial issues to those who have played for years, but I fear they can be enough to put new people off.
Finally, our Board needs to follow the lead of other national governing bodies and become more professional in how we operate, and how we’re structured. To deliver our strategic priorities we need to ensure that we have the necessary skills at Board level – so we need to become a skills-based board. And to find all the skills we need I believe that, again, we need to look outwards and appoint some people from outside bowls. This can give us the skills we need plus diversity of experience and thinking, which is critical for good decision making.
What is the Chair’s role in all this? Well, I believe an effective Board Chair is the equivalent of the conductor of an orchestra; they make sure everyone is heard, give the team direction and leadership, and support the team members so they can perform at their best. That team includes you: bowlers, clubs and County Associations. We need your input to identify our strategic priorities and we need your help to implement them.
The role of Chair (in fact, any Director) is not for life - if I'm elected I do not intend to do it for anywhere near as long as 18 years. Good governance practice (as stated by Sport England and the Financial Reporting Council) sets a maximum term for Directors of 3 terms of 3 years or 2 terms of 4 years. I would follow that recommendation. ...