This past weekend I was lucky enough to hold six ‘Social Media Awareness’ sessions for Victorian basketball’s elite development programs, NITP and NPP, 200 athletes in the age groups of Under 16, 18 and 20s.
It was my third-straight year working with the Metro and Country players, all looking to take their sport as far as they can – their ‘pinnacle’.
As tends to happen in these sessions I find myself getting almost apologetic to the athletes about the scrutiny their online profiles will be, and are under, as they progress through exciting opportunities, but have to keep reminding myself and them, that it is ultimately a good thing if that spotlight shines on them – it likely means they’ve ‘made it’, or are heading in the right direction.
Perhaps it’s not fair, but it’s happening. Just like applying for a job, it might not be ‘fair’ that they want to talk to your former employers or referees, but it’s a necessary part of achieving your goals.
As I said to them, ‘most young kids aren’t spending their long-weekend getting this lesson. Most of them don’t care, and have no real need to worry about this stuff. But you, you want to reach the pinnacle of your athletic pursuits, it’s a necessary thing to take care of. Like your nutrition, like your recovery, your academics, your training and playing… there are some unavoidable boxes that must be ticked. And a good online reputation is one.