Confidence is at the center of what it takes to become a good official at any level. Knowledge, Dedication and Experience help create confidence and officials who build confidence appear more comfortable doing their job.
Too much confidence however may lead to arrogance which in turn may lead to negative relationships with players, coaches and partners.
If you are going to project the image that you know everything, make sure that you really do know it all. There are plenty of people who “think” they know the rules. Often those who try to come off as the know-it-alls have the most self-doubt. Confidence comes from studying the rules, knowing their purpose and applying them as intended.
It is only a matter of time until people discover the truth behind the image you project.
While refereeing, learn to listen to players, coaches, and partners. The best way to build a rapport with others is to listen to them. By listening to others talk you can learn something, gather valuable information or get an insight into a situation. Not all discussions have to be a two-way path.
We are human and as such perfection is unattainable. When mistakes are made dealing with them and learning from them is important, acceptable and understandable but being a repeat offender is not. The sharing of these experiences with others can become a valuable learning process for them as well.
There are officials who want to learn all they can while others are perfectly content with their current position and don’t particularly care to hear from others. That is OK! Don’t waste your time on people who do not show interest. The body language of someone not interested in the discussion is easy to recognize. Trying to impose your discussion on partners, players or coaches who do not want to listen may give the impression that you are better than they are, whether you mean to or not.
Some officials may suffer because they do not have enough confidence in themselves while others have too much. Everyone who referees brings their own set of qualities and experiences to a game. Don’t try to be someone else, learn to be yourself. Just as in the case of confidence, there will quickly come a time when trying to be someone you are not will be discovered. Confidence must be used wisely and productively. What one does is often considered more important than what one says. Uncontrolled confidence may eventually turn into cockiness or arrogance.