We govern Neurodiverse Games Coaching
We make sure our policies are adhered to and quality of all Games Coaches remains peer reviewed. You can find the policies below. All profits go to organisations helping make this world a better place for the neurodivergent.
Iain qualified as a lawyer in 1988 specialising in M&A, stock exchange and complex commercial and joint venture work. Between 1998 and 2002, Iain was Director of Corporate Finance at a corporate industrial developer headquartered in the UK and USA. He joined one of the world’s largest law firms in 2002 and was global Co-Chair of the Commercial Contracts and Franchise and Distribution Groups for 10 years before joining Freeths as National Head of Commercial in 2019.
Freeths is a UK top 50 law firm with offices in 12 cities in the UK. The firm employs over 1,000 lawyers and support personnel and in the last financial year had fee income in excess of £110 million.
Iain’s work involves commercial transactions of all descriptions, including outsourcing, offshoring, manufacturing, consultancy, services and service level agreements, procurement of goods and services, supply chain management, logistics, international trade and capital asset procurement, and maintenance. Iain also advises clients in relation to the many different ways of delivering goods and services to market, both within the UK and internationally, including direct sale, agency, distribution, e-commerce, and business format franchising.
Iain also advises in relation to domestic and multi-jurisdictional structured joint ventures, partnerships and strategic alliances, providing advice on appropriate deal structures and delivery mechanisms relating to national and multi-jurisdictional transactions.
Iain is ranked as a “leading individual” for commercial and franchise work in The Legal 500 and Chambers, is listed in the global Who’s Who Legal for franchise work and is an Acritas™ Star Lawyer. Iain is an Affiliate Member of the British Franchise Association and contributing editor of Global Legal Group’s “International Comparative Legal Guide: Franchise”.
Iain lives in Hertfordshire, is married to Victoria (also a Partner in an international law firm) and has 4 children. He is a keen sportsman with interests in rugby, snowboarding and all forms of motorsport. He is an RFU accredited junior rugby coach and referee.
The Answers You Need
HOW DO YOU MAINTAIN THE QUALITY OF GAMES COACHING?
Let’s get the standard stuff out of the way. All Games Coaching members must be welfare trained, with DBS, and first aid trained.
Instead of making Games Coaches operate to The Standard for games coaching we use three forms of peer review...
Peer review of Games Coaching members by players. All sessions are pay-as-you-go, with no trials, no squads, and players turn up because they want to. If players keep turning up they are giving their peer reviews of their Games Coaching.
Existing Games Coaching members peer review when someone can join as Games Coach
Existing Games Coaching members peer review each other to maintain membership.
The second and third peer reviews follow these steps…
Step 1: Current Games Coaching members keep an eye out for players who attend our community sessions and who are very comfortable playing games to diversify their thinking and ask if they would like to explore joining.
Step 2: Those selected by current Games Coaches members attend a course on how the brain works in the most and least effective way while working alongside current Games Coaching members. No exams. No certificates. It’s just interesting. The basic content is outlined later on in this document.
Step 3: When 3 of the Games Coaching members confirm someone is ready to run their own sessions they are accepted as Games Coaching members of NeuroDiverseGamesCoaching.ORG
Step 4: Once a year all Games Coaching members attend a festival of games where we have fun as we play games to diversify our thinking as a way for of us all to peer review each other.
Step 5: If 5 Games Coaching members agree a current Games Coaching member is no longer suitable to be a member that person is removed. If they want to come back they go back to Step 1.
WHAT IS YOUR APPROACH TO INCLUSION, CHILD PROTECTION, NEURODIVERSITY, REPORTING PROCEDURE
When Games Coaches are working for other organisations those organisations policies apply as well as our policies.
Our inclusion policy
We will never exclude someone for struggling to meet The Standard of any given sport. We play with space to create something out of nothing. As everyone can occupy space - everyone can help frame space - so everyone can play a part in creating something out of nothing and help others adapt on the field of play. The only way a player will be excluded is when they refuse to follow the “be kind” rule - which often means they refuse to play with space and instead repeatedly tell others how to meet The Standard of the sport being played and/or impose athletic dominance to overcome weaker players.
For players with Learning Disabilities. Instead of lowering or changing The Standard to give players with Learning Disabilities a sense of achievement at attaining The Standard - we give players an experience of the joy and beauty that comes from finding previously hidden, personalised, performance that always lies outside of any standard way of playing.
Our child protection policy
Our policy is to minimise the power distance between a coach and their players. Games Coaches are not allowed to rank, grade, select or deselect players on their ability to progress toward The Standard of the sport being played. There are no squads. No weekly commitment to play. There is no peer pressure to meet The Standard of the sport being played.
Our policy for neurodiversity
We know from science that the brain rewires itself. As our brains rewire their circuitry to better meet our circumstances and we are all different and living different lives - no two brains are exactly the same. We are all - to varying degrees - neurodiverse from each other. Science also suggests that two brains that think differently are better at solving problems than many who think the same. We know the ability to diversify our thinking is crucial to all aspects of our lives. Our neurodiverse policy respects science and encourages everyone to be more neurodiverse of each other. Our "Be kind" rule stops everyone from trying to make others think more like themselves. To honour and encourage neurodiversity. We don’t try and “fix” the neurodivergent by making them less neurodivergent.
Games Coaches are responsible for their own insurance. We are currently seeking to partner with insurance providers to make this as easy as possible.
All players, parents, and Games Coaches are encouraged to report anything they don’t like to our help centre where other Games Coaches are available to peer review the performance of another Games Coach. If that doesn’t resolve the issue it is passed to our governance committee.
WHAT DO WE DO WITH PROFITS?
All profits go to organisations trying to make this world a better place for the neurodivergent.
When it became clear that helping some of the best engineers on the planet to work together had been the perfect preparation for our founder Jon Thorne to home-educating his two neurodivergent children - Jon gave up work to home-educate.
We spent the next 15 years - asking ourselves - What if, attaining the highest standard is NOT the most important factor to success? The answers to that question created Games Coaching and NeurodiverseGamesCoaching.ORG
Everyone on our committees is in some way connected to someone who is neurodivergent.