Q&A WITH CRAWFORD CHALMERS
- Sport Careers Client and Head of Football Operations at Oxford United Football Club, Crawford Chalmers takes part in a Q&A this week
- Chalmers discusses his role at Oxford United, his career so far and his future goals
Sport Careers client, Crawford Chalmers took time out of his busy schedule as the new Head Of Football Operations at Oxford United to do an exclusive Q&A with us this week:
You've recently passed the innovative new Master's degree in Sporting Directorship. How do you think that has prepared you for executive roles in sport?
The course has helped me prepare in numerous ways, from giving me the knowledge to make high performance decisions to learning from the experiences of my peers.
This has led to your current role at Oxford United as Head of Football Operations. How have you found this new position and what have been the biggest lessons you've learned since joining the club?
It's been a great chance to implement much of the learning from the course. Being a League One club necessitates being stringent with budgets and the importance of making decisions based on the long term sustainability of the club.
You've worked your way up through roles in community engagement, coaching, scouting, commercial management and even player representation. Do you think learning in each of these different areas has been valuable in developing your skill set for a senior position?
It's been invaluable - as a Sporting Director I think it's really important to understand the intricacies of each role beneath you and I think it's a massive plus that I've been able to experience many of these first hand.
These types of roles are becoming more popular in English football as they begin to follow a more traditionally European approach. Do you think eventually all clubs will be structured in this way, and do you think it will be valuable for the development of football in the country?
For me any club that has its long term interests at heart will invest in this type of role. I see the role as being the 'guardian of the football club' and as such I think it is of paramount importance.
Do you have any advice for people that have ambitions of entering the executive side of football? Specifically younger people that may think they don't have the playing experience to succeed in that type of environment?
Playing experience will always be considered important but there is so much more to this role than having that on your CV. Being able to balance the business requirements of the club with the on field performance is vital so having experience in both aspects is key to achieving success.
What are your future goals for Oxford, and for your personal career in the game?
With regards to Oxford United, it's a case of onwards and upwards so for me personally I'm looking to improve the infrastructure to facilitate high performance. I want to prove myself at the highest level so I am determined to achieve that.