Prepare your club for 2020

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Set your club up for a successful 2020 with these five ideas.

As you look towards the end of another year, you also prepare new budgets, new goals and dreams for the year ahead. Although many have talked about the demise of golf, most of us realize this great game will outlive all of us. Golfers love golf! At the same time, as an operator, you are always thinking about ways to maximize cash flow and minimize things on the expense side. While the number of golfers and dollars are vital keystrokes on your scorecard, there are additional areas to think about improving that will enhance your property for the member, the guest, and the staff. As you plan out 2020 here are 5 areas to think through as you create your wish list for a year of a stronger membership, improved rounds, and sunny skies.

If I were responsible for a property today, here are 5 things I would work on to gain better results in the vital areas of: increased golfers, increased loyalty, improved cash flow. Here are today’s highfives:

 What matters for 2020:

1)    Budget your time to maximize the goals you set for 2020. Your time is all you have. Create a discipline for yourself and your staff in order to invest more time in the “A” list items, while spending less time in the areas that produce low returns. Prioritizing matters!

2)    Spend high quality time finding strong staff members. There is nothing more important in my mind than to hire, coach and retain a strong group of people. When you have a strong team, one that owns the mission, you will attract more loyalty, golfers & dollars. Always be recruiting so you have a file of applicants for all roles on property. People want to work for good businesses and good managers, so assume they will always take your call. Recruiting matters!

3)    Update your policies, rules, and add an updated mission statement. It is vital to be a business for today. While golf is a game with an amazing tradition, people under 35 want the things important to them, important to their now. Don’t sell yesterday to a generation that is all about today. Create a mission statement important to you and teachable to your staff. Execution matters!

4)    Presentation and safety matters. Get together with your managers to review the property presentation from parking lot to 18th green. From the signage, to lighting, to the menus, to the restrooms to maybe a welcoming “experience your best day here at……..” handout at the shop, work hard to improve every area of the experience from the member/golfer point of view. Have your entire team “walk 18 holes in their shoes.” Presentation matters!

5)    Bring inclusion to the team. When you include the staff in the budget process, in the results, in the ups & downs of the business they will buy in as never before. Treat people as adults and they will respect the process, the property and you in a most professional way. Buy-in matters!

There are many things to think about as you budget for and plan a new business year. The 5 areas above are focused on gaining results by and for people. When you have a strong group of people rowing in the same direction, with a passion for service, you will create a great story. When the members know you are working hard for their satisfaction, the loyalty will grow. There are many, many things that matter in the course of any business day, yet the 5 thoughts above can help impact your property for the present and the future as few other. Testing Matters!

Jack Dillon is an Orlando-based writer of the highfives series and is a speaker and an expert in hospitality, merchandise and people coaching. He has been in this industry for more than 45 years. Contact him at 407-973-6136.

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