Well Society Board Meeting Summary – March 2017

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The Well Society Board met on March 21st 2017 for our monthly meeting. This was both a Well Society and Supervisory Board meeting covering topics relating to the Well Society and the overall governance of the club.

The meeting was attended by Alan Burrows, Douglas Dickie, Tom Feely, Doug Inglis, Sandy Kilpatrick, Hugh Logan, Markus Schieren, Maureen Kirkwood, Jason Henderson and Craig Hughes. Gavin Whitefield sent his apologies as he couldn’t attend.

A number of topics were discussed and we are happy to provide a summary below.

Process of Appointing the New Manager

The meeting opened up with a discussion on the appointment of Stephen Robinson as manager. Most of the details can be found in our statement issued last week, however it was important the board discussed the process to ensure everyone was satisfied with how the decision was taken.

Douglas Dickie and Alan Burrows gave more of an insight into the interview process and how everything unfolded. It was stated that Stephen Robinson’s interview and plans for the club short, medium and long term made him the outstanding candidate.

Stephen has already appointed Marlon Beresford as his new goalkeeping coach.

Stephen has also stated that he is completely supportive of fan-ownership and is happy to get involved in any way he can to help.

Project Brave

Alan Burrows gave another update on Project Brave. The document outlining the plans was released by the SFA on the 17th March. It has been documented that any clubs who wish to join the Elite League will need to meet certain criteria.

Alan stated that he is working with Karen Patterson in the Football Department to lay out exactly what the criteria is and what it would take for our club to meet it.

The club must indicate that we are bidding for a place in the Elite League by March 31st.

Alan Burrows stated that he believes the funding of the Youth Academy should stand alone rather than be included in the club budget each year. This means that the Youth Academy financing would not rely on team performance, cup runs, player sales etc. It was also felt that we could attract investment in the Youth Academy as it is an appealing project.

As this is an extremely important topic for the club it will be covered at each board meeting. Alan Burrows also stated he will keep all board members up to speed with any developments.

Marvin Johnson Deal

Alan Burrows gave an update on Marvin Johnson’s progress at Oxford and how the deal will continue to benefit the club. Marvin is closing in on making a number of appearances which will trigger an additional payment to the club. If Oxford are promoted this will also lead to another payment to the club and, should Marvin be sold on, the club will also receive a significant sell on percentage.

Club Values

As a fan owned club it has always been stated how important it is that the club maintains and strengthens its reputation as a family friendly, community focussed club. A vital part of this is having a set of values that all of the staff should adhere to.

A value statement has been put together and agreed to. These values will be circulated and discussed with the club staff before a statement on the club values is released by the Well Society.

It was also stated how important it is that these values are met by the playing staff and the management. It was acknowledged that, during his interview process, Stephen Robinson made it clear how much importance he puts on discipline and representing the club in the right manner.

Business Club

Doug Inglis gave an update on the proposals to reform the Business Club. There has been a desire from the Well Society for quite some time to work with the club on this, however it was important the new Commercial staff were brought in first and heavily involved in all discussions.

Last week Doug, Sandy Kilpatrick and Gavin Whitefield met with Suzanne Reid, Head of Commercial and Marketing, and Bernadette Brannan, Events and Hospitality Manager. Doug stated that they were very impressed by both Bernadette and Suzanne, and both were on board with working alongside the Well Society on reforming the Business Club.

The club has also recently appointed Peter Gemmell as Head of Business Development. A meeting has been set up to include Peter in these discussions and put plans in place for the first Business Club event.

Finances

The total income for the month of February was £10,560.

The total funds held at 13th March was £124, 671.

In accordance with out on going commitment to the club to ensure constant positive cash flows in the various financial submissions made regularly to the SFA and SPFL, we will shortly make a further transfer of funds to the club. Within the next few days we will transfer a sum of £110,000 and in due course a further £10,000. This will honour our previous commitment to provide a total of £120,000 at this time of the season.

Website Improvements

Jason Henderson and Craig Hughes met last week to discuss ways they can improve the website. The board were happy for Jason and Craig to take this forward. There was also discussion of more videos being produced and shared as part of a Well Society TV section on the website.

Other improvements included increased news stories and a revamped FAQs page, which will be continuously updated with new questions and answers, in an attempt to make the website far more of an informative and up-to-date source for both members and non-members.

Events/Activity

Hugh Logan brought up the point that he believes we should make the most of our spaces in the directors box for home and away games. At away games in particular there is, at times, places available which we could offer to our members. It was agreed that we should ensure this happens for future matches.

It was also stated that having Well Society representatives around the ground on match day is extremely important for us. At the last match we had directors in all three of the home stands.

Craig Hughes stated we are looking to organise a Well Society Player of the Year award giving the members the opportunity to vote. It was also agreed that we should organize a Q&A with the new manager and that this event should be exclusive to Well Society members.

We will finalise a date for this event and get information out to members ASAP.

As discussed at the last meeting, we are also working on a Well Society raffle. We are aiming to have this released in the next couple of weeks.

Members’ Questions

We have not been sent a lot of questions from members this month, however a couple of points were raised.

A request was made for the picture of Davie Cooper in his Rangers kit to be removed from the Cooper Suite. The request was made suggesting only images of him playing for Scotland and Motherwell should be displayed. The board believed that the majority of supporters would not see the photograph’s removal as necessary at the current time.

Another member suggested that we should make improvements to the seating in the Phil O’Donnell Stand. It was suggested that the space in between the seats is too tight. It was felt by the board that to improve the entirety of the seating in the stand would be very expensive and, with many other areas around the ground requiring attention, it wouldn’t be a priority at this stage.

If you have any questions regarding any of the topics covered or have any other issues you would like us to cover please get in touch at well.society@motherwellfc.co.uk