Sports tournaments around the country are often run by tournament directors. The job description of a tournament director can vary depending on the sport the tournament is for. Directors must be good managers and organizers will need to guide volunteers and staff. The tournament director may not need an in-depth knowledge of the sport she is overseeing, but she will need to know the basic rules and be good at hiring strong support staff.
Regardless of the sporting event, there are some basic responsibilities for a tournament director. The director’s main job is to oversee the general operations of the tournament. Some of the basic list of duties include hiring staff, whether professional or volunteer; implementing the policies and rules of the tournament; interacting with the person overseeing the facilities; instructing the staff and coordinating internal communication; coordinating event finances; and overseeing scheduling, statistics, communication, promotion, marketing, and participant recognition.
Evaluations, Raising Funds
Some tournament directors will be required to evaluate the tournament after the event is concluded. That evaluation will determine what aspects went well and what aspects need improving in order to update and improve the job descriptions of the tournament director and other staff members for the following season. Also, depending on the sport and financial concerns such as team entry fees, the tournament director may be required by job description to raise funds and secure sponsorships.
Qualifications for a tournament director would include someone with some sort of experience in running a tournament, whether that experience comes from being a volunteer, staff personnel or an assistant director. The tournament director must prove that he or she has good communication skills because he or she may be called upon resolve conflicts, conduct meetings between staff, volunteers and tournament participants and make presentations.
In running a successful tournament, the tournament director should have the ability to reach numerous outcomes. Those outcomes include creating a positive tournament experience for the fans and participants, resolving any conflicts amicably and meeting predetermined goals that can include finances, attendance and number of participants. The tournament director should be able to create an environment for positive staff morale and productivity and ensure sound financial management.
Jobs Vary by Sport
Some tournament directors will have very specific duties depending on the sport. For example, a tournament director for a high school sporting event will have to go through training and meetings with the state’s athletic association and work through the school’s principals, rather than having direct contact with the coaches. Tournament directors for individual sports, such as a golf tournament for private or nonprofit groups, will have direct contact with participants and will need to be knowledgeable about the sport and be aware of local rules and formats.