Filling your dance card in 2021

Average: 3.4 (72 votes)
Among the many issues facing golf course operators in year two of Covid-19 is the difficulty in putting together a quality, consistent staff of employees.

Among the many issues facing golf course operators in year two of Covid-19 is the difficulty in putting together a quality, consistent staff of employees. With many people receiving enhanced unemployment benefits as they potentially wait on going back to a previous role, or possibly searching new roads, good people may seem extremely hard to find. Over the past few weeks I have heard story upon story of solid job openings being ignored by all but inexperienced candidates. What on earth are course operators expected to do as the bell rings for the new season? In times past, people, especially the very young, and the young at heart, would stand in line waiting for the call. Now even as vaccines are in circulation, many people are still concerned about safety, prepared to wait until more facts are known, more people have received both shots against the virus. As the temperature rises, golfers will be dropping bags at the bag drop, looking forward to another season of long balls, crooked balls, and putts that rim the cup. There is no time to spare: people must be on board, with a bit of training in order to handle what many expect to be year two of full tee shots throughout the world of golf.

If you are having difficulty finding people to fill the team, it is time to widen your vision for what a team member can be. This highfives post will provide five thoughts about hiring staff, who to look for, as well as a thought about building a team from the new group. Because golf is hospitality, and hospitality is all about service, training the candidates you hire is just as important as making the hires. People make the difference at the property, each and every day. As the leader, you are the conductor, setting the pace. You, however, are not the one making good things happen with the thousands of touch points on any given day. Choosing good people and then providing some specific direction should be your top mission. Finding good players and placing them in a role best-suited, is how you will create a winning year. Here are five thoughts for filling the dance card in 2021:

1)    Some of your best candidates might just be customers. With the wide variety of roles needed to be filled at the property, you may find people who are unexpectedly out of work, in between jobs, or even looking for a small gig. The answer is always no until you ask, so why not ask a few of your loyal customers?

2)    There may be stay at home Moms or Dads looking for part-time work. As you look to fill roles from a very different group of people, flexibility becomes that thing you do to get people interested in coming on board

3)    School teachers can be offer a real boost during the busy summer months, maybe even on weekends

4)    Think about the older people in your community. Many have had great careers, love the game, and would find it a real joy to be a part of your team., and not only as rangers. You may find a few former leaders who might turn out to be strong mentors, in addition to amazing team members

5)    Last but not least are the young people of your community. Whether you are hiring people just out of school, in transition, or those not going to college, young people bring a great energy to the property and the workplace. At the same time, it is important to turn this very unique group of people into a unit that wants to serve together, work together. There must be respect for all, amazing listening, and lots of staff get-togethers in order to make the group into a unit.

Although proper hiring is vital to a successful year, the work is only beginning. Getting the generations to understand each other, and to come together is a never-ending part of leadership. Whether it is April or July, there is no finish line for the amount of oversight the group will require in order to not only bring them together but keep them together of the entire season. It is going to be a busy season. Don’t get caught taking too much time to hire or putting off training because things are too busy. Treat every staff member as if they will be a part of your organization for the entire year……maybe even for years to come. Make them each feel they are valued, then watch how well they treat your community of golfers.


Jack Dillon writes the high fives series. This is year 11 of the high fives blog. Jack is a speaker and expert in service, the golf shop, merchandising, and operations. Contact Jack for help or support this season. Jack lives in Orlando, is available through ZOOM and: 407-973-6136, or

Add new comment

If you enjoyed this article and would like to sign up for a FREE digital subscription, click here!