First Tee – Silicon Valley actively creates a space of belonging for every participant – no matter what walk of life. We help participants discover what’s inside of them, guide them to strengthen it, and mentor them to put it into action in everything they do. One way that we do this is through “coachable moments” – real-time windows of opportunity for participants to learn something very specific to what they are experiencing. Our team of mentors is key to making this happen.
2020 for all of its challenges has been one big “coachable moment” for First Tee – Silicon Valley and our team of mentors. Our team has leveraged this year’s challenges to strengthen our coaching infrastructure, expand everyone’s capacity as a mentor, and bond as a team.
Together, we streamlined and enhanced our lesson plans, and produced how-to and informative curriculum and training videos. We used the time to equip our mentors with additional coaching tools and safety strategies/procedures.
Knowing how to engage and build relationships with participants means we needed to continue to foster our teamwork from within, and 2020, despite its social interaction challenges, provided us with an opportunity to try something new. We explored Zoom team bonding activities including a fun Rice Crispy baking challenge and held a golf outing at Moffett Field Golf Course, celebrating and bringing together advance participants, paid instructors, and volunteer coaches. Through obstacles comes opportunities, the chance to come together and work together. Our coachable moment this year was how we rallied to create new website content, and new experiences that strengthen our team as positive mentors.
We often describe golf as the context, the learning lab, in which we teach our life skills curriculum. Golf is the Where and illustrates much of the What that we teach. Simultaneously, mentoring is the means, the delivery method, by which we teach. Mentors are the Who and How of our teaching.
2020 has been one big coachable moment for our mentors making them even more well-prepared to walk alongside our participants as their individual coachable moments arise. All of our added efforts in 2020 to grow stronger as a coaching team ultimately leads to a caring, trusting posture towards our participants and readiness to help them.