5 ways to engage front line golf staff

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As a nation now built on an economy of service, so much of our experiences feel less than satisfactory, correct? From the dry cleaner, the restaurant, the car dealership and beyond, it seems people want our money, but don’t want to care about us as people. How can that be? Doesn’t everyone in business say we are a service economy? As one who has studied customers and service since the 80’s, the thing I am seeing as an older spender is that many companies put little time, money, and effort into developing front line staff. You know, the only people that see and connect with the customer on a daily basis. How can this be?

If front line people are the ones who take the calls, handle every transaction and manage most complaints, why do they not get our time and attention? Do we believe they have little value? Do we believe it is a waste of resources to train them? Do we believe they will not stay very long? The saying goes: “what if we do not train them, and they decide to stay?” Let’s agree that the people in the pro shop, bag drop, restaurant, and sales office areas are vital to your business. We need to look at treating them, as we expect them to treat our golfers.  Here are 5 thoughts about golf’s front line staff:

1) Hire people who like people, who understand that providing great service is not servitude.  It is vital to put people in the proper roles, where they can shine

2) Create a continuous program for all front line staff that includes: managing a transaction, follow up training, and conflict resolution

3) Reports today say that up to 65 percent of US employees are not engaged in their jobs. Being face to face with your people, and away from the computer is vital to making each feel valuable in your operation. You can be the catalyst here

4) Create mini rewards and recognitions that turn people on about you, your leadership, and the property. Hiring is expensive. You chose your team for a reason. Create a long term plan for each one

5) Ask your members and golfers for feedback on service. Many of your golfers are successful in the business world, and can be great assets for you as you look for ways to build more inviting service in the front line areas.

There are several touchpoints in your business every day. Be certain to know what can work, what is happening, and steps to build improvement. Better service is not hard to achieve. It does take a strategy, buy-in, the right people, continuous training and (reminding), recognition & rewards. Finally, work to treat every golfer (and staff) as 10-year appreciating assets.

Jack Dillon writes the highfives posts.  Jack is a Toastmaster, speaker, blogger. He has been in the golf industry for 45 years.  Have Jack present at your next front line meeting.  He has deep experience and success here.  Jack lives in Orlando.  Reach Jack at 407-973-6136.  Thank you.



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