If you are going to successfully navigate the college baseball recruiting process, you’re going to have to be able to communicate well with coaches. This isn’t always easy. Many college baseball recruits, past and present, have commented that communicating with coaches during the college baseball recruiting process can be intimidating or difficult at first. Those same players have also unanimously said that the best way to get over that initial intimidation is to talk with more coaches and not fear rejection. Practice makes perfect. The more you communicate with college coaches, the sooner you’ll realize you both are after the same thing—a program fit!
The following tips for successful communication serve two purposes. First, they are great guidelines to help you show coaches you have the communication skills that they are looking for. An additional benefit is that they are a great rubric for evaluating the way coaches are communicating with you. Coaches who communicate poorly are just as important to seek out in the recruiting process as coaches who communicate well. No matter who you end up communicating with, these four tips will serve you well!
Communicate with positive body language
As we discussed at length in Using Positive Body Language to Get Recruited, good body language is absolutely critical in the recruiting process. Your body language will also be your first form of communication to a college coach, and there is a lot they can pick up just from watching you play and interact with teammates, coaches, parents, and others. Demonstrate positive body language and confidence no matter how things are going. Carrying yourself in a manner that will attract college coaches will pay off in the long run. Curious about what kinds of positive body language coaches are looking for? The list here will get you started. Like anything else, you can practice having good body language so that it becomes second nature at the field.
Create consistent patterns of communication
Coaches don’t always have to be the ones to initiate communication. In fact, think of it as a joint responsibility between you and the coach to keep up consistent patterns of communication. If you know a coach is interested, keep him in the loop. You don’t want to spam a coach with constant contact, but things like an email telling them about your upcoming schedule, a phone call to check in, or a text message (or social media post) of some updated video footage will go a long way in keeping you fresh in their minds. Do your part in making sure there are no major lapses in communication. Consistent patterns of communication tell coaches that you are interested. If the interest is returned, you will likely find yourself hearing from the coach more often as well. Consistency of communication is important from both ends. Ultimately, it falls on your shoulders to reach out and find out where you stand if all goes quiet on the communication front. We explain why here.
Punctuality shows importance
This goes hand-in-hand with consistent communication patterns. Responding to coaches in a timely manner is a big deal. Don’t leave coaches wondering if you are interested because you didn’t get around to responding to their email, text, or phone call in a timely fashion. This goes for all schools, including new schools that you have never heard of. Respond to everyone the same way you would your dream school. The baseball world is small and you never know if that coach will be at your dream school by the time you graduate. Punctuality shows schools that they are a priority of yours and you value their time. You want programs to be interested in you and they want you to be interested in them. Responding in a timely fashion takes care of your end of the bargain!
Honesty is the best policy
Lying to coaches or bending the truth will get you nowhere. Communicate the truth, even when it may be difficult. Answer questions honestly, provide honest information, and expect the same from the coaches you interact with. If you are caught in a lie, it’s likely to damage more than just the relationship you have with that particular coach. The coaching community is a tight knit network, and word travels fast. You should also hold coaches accountable for being honest with you. If they need to lie to get you to campus, it sets a very poor precedent for what you are getting when you join the program. We find that honesty is the best policy in interactions with coaches.
Want more information on communicating with college coaches? Check out Step 5 and Step 6 of the Recruiting 101 section of our website, which walks you through the communication stages of the recruiting process with lots of advice and resources to help along the way.