CultureCoordinator Blog

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Information and opportunity symmetry are two concepts every Culture Coordinator must understand. You might remember from previous posts and podcast episodes that Daniel Pink coined the term information symmetry in his book “To Sell Is Human.” Information Symmetry is the idea that we now live in a time in history when essentially everyone has access to the same information.

If you’re like me, and you grew up playing sports sometime in the previous century, then you grew up in an era of information asymmetry. Your youth coach, junior high coach, or high school coach had access to more information about coaching and leading sports programs because they were a professional coach.

These days, every player and parent in your program has access to nearly all the information you do as a professional coach.

A corollary idea to information symmetry is Opportunity Symmetry. After reading Pink’s book, I started to kick around the term opportunity symmetry when I realized something similar to information symmetry was happening regarding the opportunities available in youth and high school sports.

Again, if you grew up playing sports in the last century, you most likely grew up in a situation where there was only one team to play for in your town or part of the city. There were not multiple club teams, and you were not allowed to attend any school in your town. You had to attend the one in your attendance area.

Fast forward to 2022 and you, as the Culture Coordinator of your program, are not the leader of the only opportunity in town. From the athlete’s perspective, we’ve transitioned from opportunity asymmetry to opportunity symmetry. The coach and the athlete both have multiple opportunities. Both now have the chance to be the proverbial free agent.

Information symmetry and opportunity symmetry are essential to understand because they force coaches to position themselves in the open market. There is an open competition for your athletes, and if you’re not even acknowledging it exists, soon you won’t have much of a program left to lead.

As a coach in an open market, casting a compelling vision is crucial for being a successful Culture Coordinator. It’s no longer enough to merely be an expert at the Xs and Os and strategies of your sport. You must now be an expert in cultivating a culture that makes your program unique and distinct in the open market.

The good news is that you don’t have to become the cliche sleazy used car salesman. Instead, you need a crystal clear clarity on your vision for the program, and you need to cast that vision to anyone who will listen.

Learning how to articulate and cast your vision for your program is what this February’s members-only Zoom call is all about. If you’re not already a member click here to learn more about membership.