Hello @Liam Murphy and thanks for the question where I am able to draw upon a time frame from the start of the century where the internet in Australia generally was very much early stages, and in relation to sports administration, practically non-existent. The toughest part was convincing people to believe there was a better way from where we felt the capability was moving and a vision ahead to what was going to become normal. There was never a shortage of excuses as to why things couldn’t or shouldn’t work. I was blessed in being able to start this journey with my partners (David and Peter, still actively involved and together as owners with InteractSport) where we had a reasonable clarity over our roles and abilities. We shared a common philosophy of creating a system where data was entered once and it flowed where it needed to go, along with a focus on team sports with a ball and a score that had a healthy representation of juniors (future audience) and a strong connection to the community.
Change can be complicated and difficult for those who have a strong need to possess and position themselves in a comfortable environment. I now accept that is still an existing behaviour. We failed often in delivering a message that was too complicated and challenging. We didn’t listen well enough.
Common obstructions early were like “I don’t have a computer” or “I don’t have the internet” or “we can’t let clubs do that” so much of this frustratingly revolved around individual control. This wasn’t helped by the inertia from governing bodies at state and national level where the interest to engage or respond in many cases did not exist.
Thankfully as we persisted in meeting people personally and presenting, from Bunbury to Penrith to Warrnambool to Northgate to Dandenong to Newcastle and to the Adelaide Hills, over several years of consistent interactions, we were able to uncover and develop some beautiful and valued relationships where cricket bound us in spirit. These people (like Ted Hussey, Carole Jones, Ashley Kaye, Craig Hambleton, Garry Davis) became champions within their community and helped to establish and then build the trust in wanting to find a better way.
By the time we then were able to properly engage with Cricket Australia, through an official tender process six years after we started the business, the foundation of reliability and usefulness that was now well established in the majority of the regional and suburban associations and clubs made it easier to progress as a partner.
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