Friday, May 12, 2017

Same Table, Different Response

I actually like writing about Tournament Director situations that come up.  I hope you don't mind reading about them.

At one the Omega stop this year, someone came up to me and stated in a loud, accusatory voice that they are playing on the same table their opponent just played on.

I expressed that we had over 80 players and only 12 tables, and so it was bound to happen.  At this point in the evening, we had no open tables to move him to.  And we try to keep the tournament really moving and it's not easy with only 12 tables and that many players, but we do our best.  He stood steadfast and was arguing with me about it for a bit.  I got upset internally and finally told him we would delay his match and put him on another table.

As he was waiting for a table to open up, he came up to me again.  Mind you, this conversation is going on in front of everyone within earshot or standing/sitting close by.  He asked me what I would do different and I told him I wouldn't have complained; I just would have played the match.  I expressed it would have helped if he just played on the same table.  Many players had to play on the same table throughout the day and didn't complain, and it would have been helpful to not delay matches and not cause a scene and just played on it.

The next day a player who had witnessed the exchange told me, "I don't know how you put up with some of these players and I don't how you remained calm last night.  I wouldn't have been so calm; he was a jerk to you."

Go forward a month and on Saturday of the very next Omega tournament, a player comes up to me after we call a match and he says, "Hey, Melinda.  I'm about to play on the same table as my previous match.  I just wanted to let you know, in case it's an issue.  How can I help?"

I looked at him dumbfounded and wanted to hug him!

I thanked him for not only letting me know, but also for the way he approached me about it and brought it up nicely to me.

This stop had 12 tables also but with 10 MORE players - 95 - so it was even tougher this next stop to try and get all the matches in.

I had a couple of extra tables open because it was really late on Saturday, but I was trying to move to one side of the pool room so the place could rent out tables to paying customers.  I asked his opponent if he was fine with the same table that his opponent had just played on and he said, "doesn't bother me - we are under the same conditions."

My point of this post is not to point out bad attitudes or to complain, my point is to bring up that as a Tournament Director, we have to deal with many different personality types while trying to run a large tournament.  Some people are kind and gentle, some are abrasive, some are complimentary, some are rude.

It just comes with the territory.  Part of the job.

I'm lucky I have had a lot of leadership classes at work in my 30s and so I try to handle the tough situations well.  Better than if I was in my 20s for sure lol.  I wouldn't be a Tournament Director with how immature I was back then with handling situations.

But, this experience is prolly like any customer service industry job.  They/We run into happy customers and also unsatisfied costumers.  My arena just happens to be mostly full of men with emotions and testosterone who are competing for money lol.

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