PCA PRESS RELEASE
Former Northants man calls on PCA members to register with PlayUp.
To see more articles,
Chad Barrett is calling on coaches across the country to register for PlayUp, an online service which he has recently launched to match up athletes with experienced coaches.
The former Northamptonshire player, who memorably made an unbeaten 114 batting at number 10 on his County Championship debut, has long held coaching ambitions which he has recently furthered in creating PlayUp.
The service, which is now in the soft launch phase after Barrett pushed back the initial release date due to Covid-19, enables athletes and coaches alike to register for the online platform which then puts them in touch, removing the stress and admin of being a self-employed coach.
At the moment, Barrett is focussed on populating the service with a database of coaches, with plans in place to open up the site to customers who are looking to improve their game across a wide variety of sports, including cricket.
Speaking to the PCA, Barrett outlined his current ambitions regarding PlayUp: “Our number one priority at the moment is to get as many coaches on board as possible, and then we want to go out to consumers. The site simply won’t work unless we have coaches!
“Signing up really doesn’t take more than four or five minutes. If you have the correct documents, you just need to upload it all to the site and then you’re ready to go and start coaching through PlayUp.
“A lot of current and former players go into coaching, and I’m hoping that this service will help them to set up and manage their business to be able to grow it in the long term.
“It’s not only about growing the business, however, it’s also about managing it and just keeping everything moving on a day-to-day basis. A lot of coaches struggle with all of that admin.
“PlayUp removes all those problems, including the diary, tax return and so on – all you have to do with it is turn up and coach.”
During his drive to engage with as many coaches across the country as possible, Barrett has put in a huge amount of behind-the-scenes work to build an extensive database.
In addition, he has used his cricketing contacts to secure the likes of Sarah Taylor, Donovan Miller and Keaton Jennings as official PlayUp ambassadors.
“I’m someone that has to do something all the time, and during the first lockdown I just got so bored! I started looking at ways to go out to people rather than waiting for them to come to me.
“Through a combination of reaching out to clubs and doing online research, I have built a database of 3,500-4,000 coaches which I am in the process of marketing towards.
“I am also very lucky to have the likes of Sarah, Donovan and Keaton on board as ambassadors, and I have had a lot of help from friends and schoolmates in particular.
“Though I have had nerves about this in the past, I feel like we are in a really good space with PlayUp now which will enable us to continue to grow.”
Reflecting on his journey of taking PlayUp from the idea phase and into a soft launch, Barrett explains that a combination of perseverance and preparation has been key.
"Even if it doesn’t go to plan, I’ve learned a hell of a lot in what has been a very short space of time.”
“Working out how to build the website was a very difficult challenge and the whole process took myself and my business partner Brett Cockin, a friend from school in South Africa, over 18 months to complete, albeit part-time.
“We were ready to launch back in early 2020, but we obviously felt that it was a complete non-starter and that we’d have to re-market and re-plan everything again due to Covid-19.
“Luckily, I was prepared for that scenario, as my transition out of playing was very smooth. I already had my coaching business before retiring and did not have that cashflow concern after playing.
“When you are playing there is a lot of down time, so you can easily run a part-time business and have a little nest egg growing on the side. I cannot overstate how important it is to prepare for the moment when retirement comes.
“For now, though, we just want to show people what we’re doing and how they can get involved and, even if it doesn’t go to plan, I’ve learned a hell of a lot in what has been a very short space of time.”