Communication with Members

Rich-TockRich Tock, the former Wisconsin PGA Section president, two-time Section Golf Professional of the Year, the 1995 Wisconsin PGA Section Merchandiser of the Year for Private Facilities and the 1989 Section Teacher of the Year, six-time Senior Player of the Year and Senior Player of the Decade in the Section, is the director of marketing to PGA Professionals at Erin Hills in Erin, Wis.

I have worked in the golf industry for a long time, and I have realized that communicating with your members is essential. Over my many years organizing tournaments and outings at various facilities, especially in northern climates, I have developed a simple way to maximize tournament and outing participation. By creating and distributing the following year’s calendar during the November/December timeframe, I am able to inform my members of every event coming up that year. On the calendar I spell out every single detail for each event. I list the dates, time, entry fee, attire, format and food & beverage that will be provided. Once the calendar is created I email it to all members, post the schedule in the clubhouse and also put it in our locker rooms. With a detailed schedule out well in advance my members are able to plan their summer months around our schedule of events. Once the following year’s schedule has been distributed my job has just begun. I find it very important for the PGA head professional to be out at the first tee or the range with a notebook in hand at all times. This allows me to speak with members about upcoming events, jot down notes and even offer to register them making the process hassle free for the member. By creating a detailed calendar early in the year and making both the schedule and myself visible and accessible, members are aware of every last detail. My goal is to have every question answered before it is asked. If I can do that my members will be happy.

By spelling out the upcoming year’s tournaments and outings as early and detailed as possible, members aren’t left juggling their schedules or asking questions. This makes it very simple for them to block off their schedules well ahead of time and forgo the risk of missing any of our club’s events. With a very detailed explanation of all tournaments and outings, members know well ahead of time exactly what to expect. After implementing this practice my tournaments and outings saw a drastic increase in participation and became 100 percent filled well ahead of time.