Golf Course Management

NOV 2018

Golf Course Management magazine is dedicated to advancing the golf course superintendent profession and helping GCSAA members achieve career success.

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30 GOLF COURSE MANAGEMENT 11.18 e No. 1 question we receive from GCSAA members when they conduct a job search is, "How can I stand out in a crowded field of qualified candidates?" ere are many strategies to stand out, and in this month's column we will explore a simple, yet pow - erful, tactic: Convey your commitment to growing and advancing the game of golf. is may seem fundamental, but it is surprising to me how many professionals in the golf in - dustry miss this important piece in their job search message. Elephant in the room. As professionals in the golf industry, each one of us is part of continuing the story of this game we love so much. Candidates who acknowledge and embrace this fact will set themselves apart. An easy place to start is by listing your in - volvement in industry organizations such as GCSAA, EIFG, First Green, local affiliate chapters and partner organizations, such as e First Tee and USGA. When listing ca - reer achievements and wins in your résumé, begin with phrases such as, "In an effort to grow our membership," and, "As part of our commitment to both the legacy and future of our golf course, we completed the following renovation projects." Also, in your cover let - ter, set a great tone of how you view your role by using a phrase such as, "I am passionate about the game of golf." Consider who will be reading your cover letter and résumé — golf - ers! Particularly if you are applying at a pri- vate equity club, the typical hiring committee is composed of a general manager and mem - bers, who undoubtedly love the game of golf, so go ahead and say the elephant in the room: Yes, you are fully invested and dedicated to the game of golf. Golf anyone? I recently presented a seminar at a state conference and had the privilege of watching the keynote presentation by Steve Mona, who is the CEO of the World Golf Foundation and former CEO of GCSAA. I was inspired by his message that we all play an important role in advocating and growing the game of golf. He left us with advice for how to answer the question we sometimes get in a job interview and we all get once acquaintances learn we work in the golf industry: "How often do you golf?" His advice was profound and, I believe, helpful as we consider our mes- sage during a job search, along with everyday social settings. He recommended our answer should convey two things: "I play golf as often as I can, and I can't wait to play again." I will forever answer that question differently than I did before hearing his message. Grow the game of golf. When considering achievements to describe in your résumé and interview answers, include ways you value all golfers/members, including women and ju - nior golfers. is is particularly effective if you are targeting family-friendly golf facili - ties and country clubs. When you are asked in an interview for examples of your job per - formance, choose stories that highlight your involvement and leadership in growing par - ticipation in golf and its importance to you. Did you set up the course with tees in the fairways once a month to encourage begin - ner golfers? Did you work with the pro-shop staff to create a ladies fun day, including an obstacle putting course on the practice green? Perhaps you hosted regional junior golf tour - naments. Overall, think of ways you lead your team to grow and boost golf participa - tion at your course and in your community. Also, consider adding someone on your refer - ence list who can speak to your involvement and commitment to the game. e next time you begin a job search and select which points to highlight in your ca - reer, leverage your love and commitment to the game of golf. By framing your achieve - ments and wins through the lens of grow- ing and advancing the game, your message will resonate with your audience of golfers and give you a common starting point from which to tell your story and win in your next job search! Carol D. Rau, PHR, is a career consultant with GCSAA and the owner of Career Advantage, a career consulting firm in Lawrence, Kan., specializing in golf and turf industry careers. GCSAA members receive complimentary résumé critiques from Rau and her team; résumé, cover letter and LinkedIn creation for a reduced member rate; and inter - view preparation and portfolio consultation. Love the game of golf? Leverage it and get a job! The next time you begin a job search and select which points to highlight in your career, leverage your love and commitment to the game of golf. (career) Carol D. Rau, PHR Twitter: @CareerGolf

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