Spotlight Series: The Work-Life Balance of NCAA Assistant Director of Athletics and Soccer Coach Timmy McCormack

Coach McCormack’s work-life bal­ance is unmatched and he high­ly rec­om­mends tak­ing on more respon­si­bil­i­ty for any coach or ath­let­ic direc­tor out there – with the right help.

Spotlight Series: The Work-Life Balance of NCAA Assistant Director of Athletics and Soccer Coach Timmy McCormack

Coach McCormack’s work-life bal­ance is unmatched and he high­ly rec­om­mends tak­ing on more respon­si­bil­i­ty for any coach or ath­let­ic direc­tor out there – with the right help.

Timmy McCormack, Assistant Athletic Director & Women’s Head Soccer Coach at Piedmont College, wants you to know how impact­ful it is to work as both the Assistant Athletic Director and Head Soccer Coach. I sat down with him to learn more about his back­ground and how he bal­ances his work and per­son­al life.

What put him in such a posi­tion to succeed?

I was for­tu­nate to have a fam­i­ly grow­ing up that was sup­port­ive of hav­ing a good work eth­ic. It all start­ed with my par­ents bal­anc­ing a fam­i­ly of sev­en with unbe­liev­ably suc­cess­ful careers in edu­ca­tion and law. I believe strong­ly in work being a part of who you are and not just a means to an end. The envi­ron­ment in which I grew up in cul­ti­vat­ed a desire to be with fam­i­ly.”

I remem­ber so vivid­ly my father rush­ing home from work so he could take me swim­ming at the pool on the mil­i­tary base I lived on as a kid, even for just a few min­utes before it closed. My moth­er involved our entire fam­i­ly in her child­care school as I tagged along every day see­ing just how metic­u­lous­ly she went about her day with a smile through­out. It meant so much to me as a child to be involved in a pro­fes­sion­al life that my par­ents val­ued, and I think I demon­strate the same to my fam­i­ly when I involved them in what I now do for a living.”

Our fan­tas­tic staff allows me to pri­or­i­tize what I need to do and check items off my list rather than try­ing to do every­thing myself, as I would have in my younger years in athletics.”

Taking on two roles must be dif­fi­cult. How does he han­dle it?

I think I learned that you can’t do every­thing your­self over time because I would spend 90 hours a week try­ing to ensure all details were per­fect when I first start­ed my career in ath­let­ics. However, it was real­ly through that time that I began to learn no mat­ter how much time I put in, I was lim­it­ed in what I could do, espe­cial­ly if I was going to spend time out­side of work with my wife and fam­i­ly. I’m in a unique and very lucky sit­u­a­tion right now because my wife is our vol­ley­ball coach at Piedmont. So, even when work becomes busy with pre­sea­son and tour­na­ments, she and I still have an oppor­tu­ni­ty to see each oth­er, even if it’s a brief time. That means the world to me, espe­cial­ly as some­one who put in so much time at work when I was younger.”

Timmy sur­rounds him­self with an expe­ri­enced staff to help Piedmont ath­let­ics suc­ceed. Outside of work­ing along­side his wife, he has fan­tas­tic help from Rachel Hines, the Assistant Women’s Soccer coach at Piedmont. Timmy goes on to men­tion that this is far from a one-man job, Our fan­tas­tic staff allows me to pri­or­i­tize what I need to do and check items off my list rather than try­ing to do every­thing myself, as I would have in my younger years in ath­let­ics.”

How do these posi­tions connect? 

The role of an ath­let­ic direc­tor reminds you to think out­side of your­self, out­side of your pro­gram. Take every­thing into account and act from there. Coaching pro­vides bal­ance to that train of thought. Coaching tells you not to think so much about the big­ger pic­ture, focus more on the play­ers, and grow from there. However, no mat­ter how you slate it, remem­ber­ing that bal­ance must be in place for both posi­tions to work is vital.”

The bal­anc­ing act is cru­cial.

I think tak­ing on the addi­tion­al role with­in the ath­let­ic depart­ment actu­al­ly helps to focus my time in order to be as effi­cient as pos­si­ble. I don’t have a lot of time to not focus on exact­ly what needs to be done on any giv­en day, so it’s imper­a­tive that I make the most of my time in the office in order to avoid hav­ing to take time away from being at home. It’s tough to do so as you’re squeez­ing in two full-time jobs into a reg­u­lar work­week, but it’s impor­tant to me to ensure that I take time away from the office to be with my fam­i­ly. Having a strong work eth­ic helps the effi­cien­cy of oper­at­ing in both capac­i­ties. It’s a chal­lenge if you want to excel in both areas, but it’s a chal­lenge that I welcome.”

What does Timmy want you to take away from this?

For those inter­est­ed in pur­su­ing mul­ti­ple roles with­in the ath­let­ic depart­ment should not shy away from doing so as long as you’re will­ing to work twice as hard for what you want in order to suc­ceed. I’m dri­ven to suc­ceed in all areas of life, and my job is a part of who I am, though not the only way I’m iden­ti­fied. I enjoy great­ly my involve­ment in mul­ti­ple areas in the depart­ment, but I love even more how my per­son­al and pro­fes­sion­al life are so inter­twined. I feel like I’ve nev­er had to work a day in my life, and I’m lucky to have the oppor­tu­ni­ties I have had to succeed.”

For more about Timmy and his pro­grams at Piedmont, vis­it the Piedmont Athletics’ web­site here.