Wednesday, 4 May 2016

The evolution of the selection process

Thank you to everyone who came and supported this years Team GB Performance Weekend (PW). It's the final part of the process to identify the dogs and handlers who will represent Agility Team GB at the international competitions we'll be attending this year.

The selection process that follows is carried out by The Coaching Team (seven people) and myself. We review the dogs & handlers performance over the two squad days and the PW which helps us to make our selections.  

This year we had four new people on the Coaching Team: Marc Wingate Wynne (Team Coach); Martin Cavill (Technical Coach); Nicky Grant (Research Projects) and Maria Johnson (Team Physio). Each have brought their individual skills, experience and knowledge of international competitions to the team and make a valuable input into the selection decisions.

When I talk with other international team managers, European judges and friends in Europe, it's clear that no selection system is perfect. How do I determine if our process is working? One question I ask the coaching team and myself is 'who has the process missed?'

The feedback I receive from these respected people and experienced handlers in the UK is that our system identifies dogs and handlers who: 

  • perform at the highest levels of agility in GB; 
  • who are committed to put the work in required for world class performance and 
  • who have those three key essentials, speed, accuracy and consistency. 

The Coaching Team and I will be reviewing the squad process again this Autumn and looking to see how we can build on it for 2017. I'd like to hear your ideas too. 

I'll be holding a Twitter Q&A on Tuesday 10th May at 7:30 pm where you can ask questions about the squad process . The Q&A will last for 45 minutes and I'll do my best to answer as many questions as possible during this time. You can use the #askcoachingteam to ask your questions.

For those people who weren't selected this year, I hope you've found the squad process to be insightful and an enjoyable experience.  For those who want to try again, I hope it has given you information and knowledge that helps you qualify for next years squad.

Finally, congratulations to everyone who has been selected. We have a strong team again and I look forward to working with you as we prepare for the European Open in France and the World Championships in Spain.

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