Strategic Review of Bridge in NSW

Discussions concerning the ABF and state organisations
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rod
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Strategic Review of Bridge in NSW

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John Scudder, chairman of NSWBA, sent this letter to clubs on 29 May, and the Coffs Harbour club forwarded it to its members. It looks like we will see some surveys coming.
Introducing a Strategic Review of Bridge in NSW

COVID -19 has affected many businesses in NSW adversely. The NSWBA and Affiliated Clubs are no exception. Bridge in NSW has lost clubs, playing venues and some 4,000 players over the past two years.

Overall, we are seeing a decline in table numbers and only a trickling influx of new and/or younger players.

Online bridge has given us new opportunities, but many miss the social aspects of their bridge get-togethers. Compared to pre-Covid times, large state-wide events are nowhere close to attracting the same number of players.

It is time to take stock! Consequently, the NSWBA is undergoing a “where should we be in five years” warts and all review of strategy. We have engaged Randall Pierce of THINK: Insight & Advice, a strategy consultant specialising in the area of Not-For-Profit organisations and Associations, to help us in understanding the breadth of the problem facing bridge in NSW, what shape the NSWBA should take and what actions need to occur to both safeguard and grow the bridge playing community in NSW going forward.

The first phase of this process, we call it the Discovery Phase, will be to conduct a number of interviews and focus groups. We will be throwing the net wide to capture feedback and ideas from metropolitan and regional bridge clubs, staffers and players, administrators and state representatives alike.

The data gathered in the Discovery Phase will provide the input for the Consultation & Survey Phase. We anticipate that every single affiliated club in your region will be contacted during this phase, and here is where we need you to assist the process. I have asked all Regional Representatives to help facilitating the completion of the Surveys by all bridge clubs and players.

Yes, I would appreciate it if most of the 10,000 bridge players in NSW give freely of their time and provide frank answers to questions.

Finally, all the facts, feedback, ideas and suggestions provided by the bridge clubs and members will feed into the Strategy Making Phase. In this third and final phase we expect to tackle and make decisions on the big gnarly issues, develop a vision moving forward and an operating model that can deliver.

The quality of this review depends on you helping the NSWBA to ensure a successful outcome with a better bridge playing future for all.

Thank you
John Scudder
Chairman, NSW Bridge Association.
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rod
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Re: Strategic Review of Bridge in NSW

Post by rod »

Attracting new players is clearly vital.

Before re-inventing the wheel I think NSWBA (and ABF) should look at what bridge organizations in other countries are doing and how well it's working. The problem is worldwide and NSWBA should not do this in isolation. I know for example that the American Contract Bridge League has an Educational Foundation and conducts "youth bridge camps" with some success.

Online play has its benefits and drawbacks. People like to be social and face-to-face bridge is a fine way to do that. I think both modes of play should be promoted but with more emphasis on F2F.
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rod
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Re: Strategic Review of Bridge in NSW

Post by rod »

American expert Larry Cohen had some things to say about attracting new players. I'm not sure I agree with all of it, but here it is:

https://news.bridgebase.com/2022/02/22/larry-cohen-attracting-new-bridge-players/
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