Although the volleyball is not so big and interesting market on a global level, there are people who create connections between volleyball players and coaches from one and volleyball clubs from the other side. The role of volleyball manager is not officially recognized and institutionally organized neither by the FIVB nor by any other volleyball confederation, like in some other sports. (ex. soccer). Anyway, we will call them volleyball managers like everybody use to call them.
Nowadays, volleyball managers are lawyers, ex-volleyball players, ex-coaches or generally people with experience in the volleyball world and with connections inside a volleyball community. There are no special requirements to become a volleyball manager.
Volleyball players decide to start the search for a volleyball manager in many situations when they:
1. Want to have an international experience outside their country
2. Change the club and go to a highly-ranked one from their championship.
3. Have finished junior level and it is time to become a senior
4. Have been contacted by some volleyball club and they don’t want to speak directly with them
In many countries, national leagues are organized like professional leagues (like in France) with professional contracts signed and presented to the competent authorities. In some other countries (ex. Italy, Turkey, etc.) they are semi-pro or amateur and in most cases you sign a contract in a form of a private agreement. And many players do this because this is the only way to play volleyball in that country and is commonly acceptable.
Before you decide whether you should have or not have a manager to represent you, you’ll have to have an approximate knowledge of your level of play. You can find it out by comparing yourself with the other volleyball players around you; try to speak with your coach or some other person who is into volleyball. The most important things are to be aware of your level of play and to expect to find a club according to this. Right from the start, it should be unreasonable to expect to play for ex. LUBE Macerata, Dinamo KAZAN orVakifbank. It is normal to have dreams, but if you are so good, this clubs would have already seen you and contacted you, right? It is not impossible that one day you will play for one of this clubs, but think about it first step-by-step.
You have to know that volleyball managers will not work exclusively for you, even if they should do this. Managers will always try to make both sides happy, so they can make the job done. If they don’t conclude the negotiations, they don’t get anything. Volleyball players change, but same clubs are there always!
Lets say that, until today, you were not contacted by any volleyball manager/agency. Then, you’ll have to contact them or you’ll have to contact the clubs by yourself.
Try to contact a volleyball manager who represents a volleyball players more-less of your level of play. Like this, you’ll have more chances to find a club. Managers who have more important players will not pay so much attention on you and, at the end of the summer; you might end up without a contract. Or maybe they will not even answer on your email.
You can also ask your friends or coaches if they have somebody to suggest to you. Like we said before, volleyball managers are well-known inside volleyball community.
Volleyball manager will offer you to sign some kind of a document of collaboration, usually for one or more years. In document should be also stated that is revocable prior to 1 month written notice. Even though this is not a 100% legal document, be aware that it can create you some problems in case you find a club using assistance of some other person.
If you decide to search for a club alone, speak with your friends if they can suggest you some club’s name. You can also find the clubs’ contact details on the internet and try to send them your volleyball CV and some videos of the games you have played, so they can watch them.
The best time to start to contact the clubs is the end or just after the end of the season, when many clubs start to make plans for the future. It is not unusual that the clubs search for the players during the whole year due to a technical problems or injuries.
When a club responds to you back, try to ask for the things they normally give. In a clubs with a modest budget, don’t expect to get a 2-bedroom apartment if they normally provide a studio, or to have a car if they are not used to give them to the players. Be reasonable with your requests, otherwise you will finish negotiating before you even really start.
Volleyball managers normally take the percentage of your contract from the club you sign with. There are managers who take both from the player and the club. If you decide to speak with a club directly, have in mind that the percentage from the contract money for the manager can go into your pocket.
If you have been contacted by a volleyball club, then it’s much easier. In major cases, manager will only have to assist to you in concluding a deal. Sometimes, it happens that the contract never gets signed due to a reasons player will never know…
With volleyball manager is much easier to have a chance to go to play for some volleyball club, but mostly depends what level of a player you are. The better player you are, the higher contract you can make and more time the manager will invest in you to find you a club. Find the manager that has the players of your level.
Searching for a club alone can be a very difficult job, even if many players do it. Use internet, read volleyball forums and blogs and get as much information as you can. Be updated constantly.
And the last thing: Try to do your best in the court, try to play the best you can! All the other things will come after…
Should you have some more questions about this matter, please use a WoV Forum to exchange your experience or to ask a question to us. We will try to find the answer to your question from the competent people inside world volleyball community.
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