Back in November 2010, a college coach told me she was going to watch a state playoff match, and that she wanted to know about the seniors on one team. Yep, in this case, I was the person to ask because I'd coached all of them in club ball.
One of the girls had played club ball for me for two years. We'll call her "Jennifer".
I gave the coach a glowing report on Jennifer, NOT because she deserved it; but, because every bit it of was true. She had earned it.
A few days later, the thought occurred to me that maybe Jennifer's parents would enjoy having a copy of it. I have pasted it below. I also thought that after the high school season was over, the parents might want to share it with her.
Jennifer may be able to use it as a letter of reference in the future. I didn't care. But I wanted the family to know how I felt. I also wanted Jennifer to know that doing the right thing, day after day, was noticed and that it had some benefits.
Well, a few months later, a few of my club players weren't exhibiting the character that I preferred. So, I thought they needed to hear about Jennifer.
So, I printed out the email that I sent the coach, gave them a copy of it, had them read it aloud to the team, and then said, "Is this what I'll say about you in a few years? If there's anything in this email that doesn't sound like you, then you can decide to change and be a better member of this team."
"When a college coach contacts me about you, I'm telling you now that I will not lie for you. I will tell the coach if you are team-first, or you-first. Are you prompt? Are you self-motivating? Will you follow directions?"