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Golf Course Management: 6 Things Every Manager Has to Know

Feb 27, 2008

Golf course management isn't easy work. Here are 6 things you have to know to successfully run a golf course.

Golf course management is a fun, rewarding, but very demanding career. To manage a golf course, you need to be not only an expert at managing a business, but also at all things golf.

Here are six things you will need to know to get into a golf course management career.

1: How the Game is Played
This seems like a given, but you would be surprised how many people think that all they need is management experience in order to make it in golf course management. In reality, to run a golf course you need to know a lot about golf.

As a golf course manager you will be expected to get to know your regular customers. It will be hard to converse with them and show genuine interest in their passion if you don't know much about the game of golf.

2: The Basics of Golf Green Maintenance
You need to know how to maintain a proper green. It is important to understand the impact the condition of the green can have on its players. A golf green needs to be in top condition in order to provide players with optimum performance. In golf course management, it will be your job to know whether the maintenance crews are doing their jobs properly, and to correct them as need be.

3: How to Manage Personnel
Just like any other management job, golf course management requires that you know how to manage personnel to your company's best advantage. All employees have distinct strengths and weaknesses; it is your job to manage your employees so that they best meet your golf course's needs.

For instance, if you have an employee who is not really doing their best in their current position, as the manager it is your job to consider whether his or her strengths would be better suited for another position, or whether your company would be better off if you let the employee go. You have to be conscious of each employee's abilities, and how they can best be used in the big picture, in order to achieve success.

4: How to Manage Money
Another part of golf course management is the financial side of things. A successful golf course requires not only a manager who knows all about golf and how to best use their employees' talents, but also can create financial success within the company. In order to do this, you need to have a strong grasp of concepts such as budgeting, business expenses versus profits, and how to maintain financial success throughout the year.

5: Current Trends in the Golf Industry
A manager does not operate in a vacuum. Things are always changing: in your company, in the industry, and in the world at large. A manager who allows themselves to get behind the times will find that their golf course declines in popularity. It is important to stay on top of the current trends in the industry, and to be able to incorporate them into your vision for your company.

6: How to Schmooze
Believe it or not, schmoozing is an important part of being a successful manager in the golf industry. Regular customers like it when you remember their names, their games, and how often they play. Also, by getting to know your regulars you can do two things: keep a feel for what people like or dislike about your golf course, and inject a little loyalty into your relationship with your customers.

Golf course management may be a highly sought after career, but not because it's easy money. On the contrary, you really need to enjoy golf course management in order to be able to put forth the required effort. As a manager of a golf course, you need to be a good manager and really enjoy golf.