2020, when you need to be adaptable

This year started at a normal pace and a lot of people were looking forward to excelling in their studies or their work in the sports field. However, since March, the whole world has slowed down and unfortunately, a lot of people have been fired from their jobs. Not only that, but a lot of people are also forced to be in quarantine or at least work from home. How do we all handle this global change? Not even everyone can work from home. Denmark’s biggest football club has made sure they are prepared for situations like this. Let us look into what they have done and what you can do in order to be adaptable and not missing out.

Sport clubs most valuable asset

This period has been a big challenge for all of us. There are tons of meetings that have been canceled and with a sports perspective, a lot of Annual General Meetings (AGM) have been forced to be postponed. But in times like these we need to do everything together, now more than ever before. This is the time to be digital and adaptable.

AGM Voting Online
Image credit: Element 5 Digital

One sports club that was already prepared for the challenges of not running their General Assembly in a physical setup only is BK Skjold, Denmark’s biggest football club. Why? Well, they have already looked into and adapted a digital solution to voting online. In all these years, especially in Sweden, we have had quite challenging times when it comes to the AGMs. Despite the big football clubs’ big amount of supporters and members during the games, they are not showing up at the AGMs even though they have the right to vote and participate in the club’s operations. A normal amount of members on the AGMs for the biggest clubs could be about 250 when they have 5-10 000 members. For example, IFK Göteborg with an average of 12 000 attendance had 238 members with voting right at this year’s AGM.

Sure, there might be a lot of people who can’t make it for that specific date and time. But there are still a lot of people not showing up. But why haven’t most of us adapted ourselves like BK Skjold? With digital voting, more people can participate without the stress of time and place to be located.

BK Skjold, Denmark’s biggest club runs digital

BK Skjold Denmarks biggest Football Club
Image credit: BK Skjold

A few years ago BK Skjold presented a digital voting solution to their 1800 members. A digital solution called Assembly Voting that could help the club to enable more members to vote online. From 12 participating people at one physical meeting, they wanted to use a digital tool with the vision to share democracy to the whole club, which means all the members.

How to grow a member-driven sports club?

The end result for BK Skjold and their online approach can be viewed below according to their President, Jens Sørensen:

  • 144 members voted that is more than 10 times as they usually get
  • They got 10 candidates to 4 board roles, which never happened before
  • They elected a qualified treasurer and an internal accountant – none of these positions have really been used for real during many years
  • 24 people came to the physical AGM – that is twice as the normal number
  • They received 15 motions through the digital solution
  • 9 of these 15 came from different members, which is another huge step for them.

What can digital voting do for sports clubs?

Thanks to digital solutions there are many great opportunities and reach is just one of them. From this story we can list several good benefits of digital voting in sports:

  • get more members to participate at AGM or other meeting points for members
  • makes it easy for members to be included and involved at different decisions
  • can create a bigger community and togetherness among the members
  • provides a greater variation among the suggestions about the club’s development
  • increases the input for the future of the sports club
  • gives members a greater insight into the club’s operations
  • builds transparency and trust about the club’s policy and decisions

Another thing that would be interesting to discuss is all the opportunities that arise with a digital voting system. Why not allowing the members to more often be part of the operations than once a year. As a member-owned club, you could and probably should involve the members more often than once a year. With the online voting system, you could run a voting process during one day or why not a week when you might want to decide if the club should create a special day for the fans or if the club should participate in the local community, etc.

Feel free to let us know what you would do or if you done this in your club.

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