Sunday, May 19, 2013

Getting Started and Staying Organized (Part 1)

There are a few good tools out there for team moms (and if I can digress here for a moment, I could go with "team parents" if I'm going to be PC...but hopefully any team dads or coaches out there reading this will affectionately know that I care for you as well but will refer to you as a mom more than likely in my posts.  Sorry, you're just going to have to deal with it.)  So back to the tools...  There are some good tools and organizational sites out there now for organizing teams.

Today I'm going to highlight and their share sites.  I have personally used Shutterfly share sites for multiple sports teams, and actually liked them so much that I started a personal one to share information on our family with family and friends.  Naturally I would pick this site service to share with you first since I am fond of it.  But hey, don't get me wrong, it has it's quirks and little things I'd like to fix, just like most things in life, but overall they are worth checking out.

Some positives about Shutterfly -

It's free. Seriously, need I say more?

There's a convenient app for share sites specifically that can be downloaded to your smart phone.

The calendar and snack schedule are easily downloaded to a smart phone calendar.

They are super easy to customize.  They offer a step by step setup wizard or you can go rogue and design on your own.  I'd lie if I said I didn't go rogue.

There are several colors and styles to choose from.  This is both a positive and a negative in my book.  There are several preset color and style templates, however, the selection needs to be a little more robust for this bells and whistles mom.

Functionality.  There is a tab and a box to contain anything and everything you would want to include on your site. There is a roster, availability chart, snack schedule (where you can easily assign people or have them sign themselves up (but really, just sign them up...more on that in a later post I'm sure), the schedule, a tile for weather, the homepage with a picture of the week and score tally - and much more.  And the best part?  All of these are optional!  Add or remove those features that fit your team's style and needs.

And of course what is Shutterfly best known for? No, not the cool Christmas and Holiday cards they have, but pictures - hello!  Shutterfly share sites are designed with pictures in mind.  It is easy for families to upload pictures and other families to download those pictures if there happens to be a great shot of their All-star making a fabulous play at third, or chasing butterflies in right field.

Best of all this site is protected!  It's available to members and invitees only.  Just make sure to offer up membership to those important people in your team players' lives... including doting grandparents.

What are my share site pet peeves you ask?  There aren't many (yet) but my biggest pet peeve with the site is the communication piece and e-mailing.  When you check a box that says 'do not e-mail' or if you uncheck a box that says 'e-mail all site members' you'd expect that they wouldn't be e-mailed, right?  Or is that just me?  Well it's a safe bet that all members on your site will be e-mailed when you change or update anything on the site.  That my friends is annoying.  **sigh**

Check out Shutterfly share sites if you are new to Team Mom duty... you won't go wrong.

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